Cathodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation of the Occipital cortex in Episodic Migraine: A Randomized Sham-Controlled Crossover Study.
J Clin Med. 2019 Dec 26;9(1):
Authors: Ahdab R, Mansour AG, Khazen G, El-Khoury C, Sabbouh TM, Salem M, Yamak W, Ayache SS, Riachi N
Three consecutive daily sessions of cathodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) was sufficient to show a significant decrease in headache duration and intensity as well as tablets consumption, in patients suffering from episodic migraine.
BACKGROUND: Migraine prophylaxis is recommended in patients with frequent and/or intense headaches, but poor tolerability and lack of efficacy of preventive drugs are common in clinical practice. Hence, new prophylactic strategies are needed.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of tDCS in terms of migraine prophylaxis.
METHODS: This was a double blind and sham-controlled trial. Forty-two migraine patients were randomly assigned in a crossover design to receive three consecutive daily sessions of both sham and cathodal tDCS stimulation (2.0 mA, 20 min) over the occipital cortex of the dominant side of the migraine pain (O1/O2). Migraine duration and intensity, number of analgesic tablets, and number of headache-free days (where no headache abortive medications are taken) were recorded one week before and two weeks after treatment. A washout period of one week was allowed before crossing to the other treatment arm.
RESULTS: Relative to sham, cathodal stimulation was associated with a significant reduction in the number of headache days, tablets consumption, and pain intensity; and a significant increase in the number of headache-free days. These beneficial effects were sustained over two weeks. No serious side effects were observed, and the procedure was well tolerated.
CONCLUSION: Based on these findings, cathodal tDCS applied to the occipital cortex seems to be an effective and well tolerated alternative to pharmacotherapy in patients with episodic migraine.
PMID: 31888011 [PubMed]