“The literature, which lacks any negative study of substance, suggests that Neurofeedback (EEG biofeedback) therapy should play a major therapeutic role in many difficult areas. In my opinion, if any medication had demonstrated such a wide spectrum of efficacy, it would be universally accepted and widely used.”
Frank Duffy, MD, Neurologist, Harvard Medical School Professor, Head of the Neuroimaging Department and of the Neuroimaging Department at Boston’s Children’s Hospital

American Academy of Pediatrics Endorses Neurofeedback as Top Level Support for ADHD

Click here, to view the Intervention Report. Or check out some of the studies that pushed the American Academy of Pediatrics toward their decision.

Detailed Research

NEUROFEEDBACK FOUND HIGHLY EFFECTIVE

The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2009

Gevensleben, H., Holl, B., Albrecht, B., Vogel, C., Schlamp, D., et al. (2009). Is neurofeedback an efficacious treatment for ADHD?: A randomized controlled clinical trial. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 50, 780–789

102 children aged 8 to 12 with an ADHD diagnosis were randomly assigned into two groups – one group did a course of 36 sessions of neurofeedback, the other did 36 sessions of a computerized attention skills training game ‘Skills’ (control group).

Outcomes were measured by comparing pre and post-training assessments using several established behavioral rating scales completed by parents and teachers.

Improvements in the neurofeedback group were superior to the control group.

The ratings indicated that “neurofeedback effects are substantial and of practical importance. Our results confirm findings of previous neurofeedback studies even under strict control conditions.”

The researchers concluded the result “indicates clinical efficacy of neurofeedback in children with ADHD”.

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NEUROFEEDBACK CHANGES BRAIN PERFORMANCE – DOESN”T JUST MASK SYMPTOMS AS MEDICATION DOES

Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 2002

Monastra, V.J., Monastra, D.M. & George, S. (2002) The effects of stimulant therapy, EEG biofeedback, and parenting style on the primary symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, Vol 27, No 4, p231-249

100 children aged 6-19 with ADHD were put into two groups – both groups received Ritalin, academic support at school, and parent counseling. One group also received neurofeedback training, the other didn’t (control group).

Whilst Ritalin was still being taken after 1 year by both groups, only the neurofeedack group showed a significant improvement in behavior as measured by parent and teacher rating scales. The researchers concluded that “the effect of Ritalin on parent and teacher ratings of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity was not robust”.

Once Ritalin was stopped after 1 year and time allowed for the drug to leave the system, only the neurofeedback group showed significant improvements on an attention and impulsiveness test.

Whilst Ritalin was still being taken by both groups, an EEG measurement showed an improvement in the area of the brain related to attention (central and frontal cortex) to ‘normal’ levels only in the neurofeedback group.

The researchers conclude “stimulant therapy would appear to constitute a type of prophylactic intervention, reducing or preventing the expression of symptoms without causing an enduring change in the underlying neuropathy of ADHD”, in other words Ritalin helps to hide the symptoms, whereas neurofeedback changes the biology of the brain to eliminate the symptoms.

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FOLLOW-UP STUDY SHOWS LASTING POSITIVE EFFECTS FOLLOWING NEUROFEEDBACK TRAINING

Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America, 2005

Monastra VJ (2005). Electroencephalographic biofeedback (neurofeedback training) as a treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: rationale and empirical foundation. Child Adolesc Psychiatric Clin N Am, 14, 55– 82

This was a follow-up on the study above, to assess whether the findings were sustained 18, 24 and 36 months after the start of the original study.

The neurofeedback group continued to demonstrate improvements 36 months after the original study began, i.e. more than 2 years after neurofeedback ended on all 3 measures – biological (brain activity seen through EEG), behavioral (teachers and parents rating scales), and Neuropsychological ( reaction and impulsivity test).

–> 80% of the neurofeedback group had decreased their Ritalin dose by more than 50%.

–> 85% of the control group had increased their Ritalin