B12 & EEG
This is a prospective self-report in which vitamin B12 dietary supplements were excluded from a raw, plant-based diet for one year. Vitamin B12 deficiency may result in prolific intracerebral consequences of demyelination, often reflected as frontal and diffuse slowing in the electroencephalogram (EEG). The prevalence of vitamin B12 deficiency is common but consensus on precise cutoff points for plasma vitamin B12 deficiency has been inconsistent. This has raised questions about potential presymptomatic vitamin B12 risks or whether higher vitamin B12 stores could provide additive health benefits. Vitamin B12 values, symptoms potentially associated, methylcobalamin supplementation, and resting EEG recordings before and after neurofeedback (NF) training were examined. Eight sessions of NF training at T3, T4, T5, and T6 resulted in 38% EEG normalization with reduced symptoms of irritability, insomnia, fatigue, and memory problems. Even though blood test results before and after vitamin B12 supplementation readings indicated an increase of 8 mg/mL (from 436 pg/mL to 444 pg/mL), neuroenhancements were not evident without NF training.
Case Study Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
This case study reviews Ms. B., a 56 year-old female with a history of multiple head injuries. She is a nurse practitioner who contracts her services to several organizations and companies. She presented for treatment due to symptoms that included, anxiety, insomnia, and cognitive deficits.
Oxidative Stress & qEEG
Fifty Eight subjects were assessed using measures of qEEG and Oxidative Stress. Subjects were identified as either fast oxidizers or slow oxidizers using hair analysis and then assigned to categories of either fast wave dominant maps or slow wave dominant maps based on a reviewer shared rating system. Fast wave maps were identified as qEEGs dominated by statistically significant levels of beta frequencies and slow wave maps were identified as qEEGs dominated by delta and or theta frequencies. Chi square analysis indicated that fast wave maps tended to be associated with fast oxidizers and slow wave maps tended to be identified with slow oxidizers.
qEEG Aspects of Sleep Apnea
Two hundred and Five subject from a Wellness Center in southern California were divided into two groups based on whether they dad received a diagnosis of Sleep Apnea or not. A Quantitative EEG was performed on subjects in each group and inspected for signs of neuro-inflammation in the form of diffuse elevated eyes closed delta. Chi Square analysis indicated that the Sleep Apnea group was significantly more likely to exhibit elevated delta than the Non Sleep Apnea group (Chi Square = 37.64, P= .05).
Eight-five (85) female and fifty-seven (57) male adults, ranging in age from 19 to 70 years (average age = 38), voluntarily participated in substance abuse counseling augmented by Mini-Q evaluation and at least 20 neurofeedback sessions, as part of the four year New York State-funded SOARS study. Some abused alcohol, some abused one substance of choice, but many were poly drug-users. Outcome measures included self and family reports of sustained abstinence, and comparison of pretreatment versus post-treatment measures for percentage of change on the MiniQ assessment, the DASS (assessing depression and anxiety), and an individualized Symptom-Tracking measure. Completion rate of the study was 63% (dropout rate of 37% included participants who completed 10 or fewer neurofeedback sessions following initial assessment). Completers reported a 93% rate of successful sustained abstinence, averaged a 34% improvement on the MiniQ (reflecting a process toward normalization of brainwave patterns) averaged a 43% reduction of self-reported emotional distress (e.g. depression, anxiety) on the DASS measure, and averaged a 38% reduction of their self-identified most problematic emotional/behavioral symptoms, as assessed via the Symptom Tracker. The very promising results of this naturalistic research (program evaluation) are discussed in terms of a strength of ecologic realism (in paralleling what occurs in actual clinical practice where adjunctive neurofeedback is incorporated into substance abuse treatment), and with regard to research design limitations and restricted generalizability, owing to uncontrolled factors which may have influenced the findings. Replication of the findings with improved design and statistical analytic procedures was recommended.
Time-Limited Neurofeedback Training at Cz Facilitates Sensorimotor Recovery Following Spinal Cord Injury: A Case Study
Robert E. Longo, MRC, LPC, BCN, Serendipity, Lexington, NC
John T. Hummer, Ph.D., BCN, James H. Quillen V.A. Hospital, Johnson City, TN
There will be occasions when the informed neurofeedback practitioner will opt to use an alternate training protocol, rather than a protocol derived from analysis of QEEG data. Deviation from standard procedure should be guided by reasoned a-priori considerations (e.g. knowledge of relevant research, understanding of brain-behavior relationships, anecdotal information from trusted colleagues, personal experience with a particular protocol, client response, etc.), as well as by clinical judgement and intuition. This case study reviews the successful use of time-limited neurofeedback with a fifty-eight year-old female who presented with complications of recent spinal surgery, including loss of sensation in both legs, and inability to walk. It was hypothesized that uptraining of Sensorimotor Rhythm (SMR) at site Cz, with inhibits on excessive slow wave activity (e.g. Theta) and excessive fast wave activity (e.g. Beta and/or High Beta) would safely and efficiently facilitate improvements in sensation, movement, and mood-related symptoms. Asymmetry analysis suggested physiological symptoms of depression and anxiety, despite the client’s unawareness of distressing moods. The client reported improvement in sensation and motor response following the very first session, conducted prior to the formal QEEG assessment. Progressive improvements were reported almost weekly over the next fourteen sessions. The client regained sensation incrementally, accompanied by co-awareness of emerging physical pain. Before long, she reported being able to able to stand and walk, first the aid of a walker, and then with a cane. By the fifteenth session, she reported being able to walk without the need of a cane. She also reported relief of lifelong migraine headaches, which had resurfaced during the latter sessions. She opted to discontinue neurofeedback, eager to get back to her busy life, which included travel. Commenting on her neurofeedback experience, she exclaimed, “I have made more gains than any of the medical doctors ever gave me hope for!”
Our findings replicate those of existing research demonstrating the robust effectiveness of SMR training at Cz. That research can now be extended to include facilitation of sensorimotor improvement after recent spinal cord injury. Because of the incredibly complex interconnected neural circuitry throughout the Central Nervous System, together with the brain’s capacity to functionally reorganize neural networks under optimal conditions in response to injury occurring anywhere within the CNS, even a simple and straightforward protocol (such as SMR training at Cz) remains a powerful tool with which to facilitate neuroplastic recovery processes.