Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) for treatment of phobic postural vertigo: an open label pilot study
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Some 30–50% of vertigo and dizziness symptoms cannot be explained by vestibular deficit or organic illness. They show co-morbidity with psychiatric disorders, i.e., anxiety and phobic disorders , illustrated in the concept of phobic postural vertigo (PPV)  describing patients with postural dizziness and subjective instability of stance and gait without pathological findings on otoneurological examination, vestibular, and balance tests. PPV exacerbates during perceptional stimuli and in social situations. The association between vertigo/dizziness and anxiety may be explained by neuroanatomical connections between the vestibular system and neuronal pathways modulated by monoaminergic influences .
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive brain stimulation technique that modulates cortical neuroplasticity. Anodal stimulation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) improves cognitive control over negative stimuli such as anxiety and symptoms of...
Partially funded by the support of the Graduate School of Systemic Neurosciences (GSN), the German Foundation for Neurology (Deutsche Stiftung Neurologie, DSN) and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (German Center for Vertigo and Balance Disorders-IFBLMU, Grant Code 01EO140, and German Center for Brain Stimulation under the Grant Code 01EE1403E). This work is part of the medical doctor thesis of HK.
Compliance with ethical standards
This study was performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki. All participants gave written informed consent prior to enrolment. This open label study is a precursor of a randomized double blind clinical trial, approved by the local ethics committee and registered at German Clinical Trials Register (DRKS00011844).
Conflict of interest
U. P., D. K., and F. P. received paid speakership from neuroCare Group, Munich, Germany. U. P. has a private practice with neuroCare Group, Munich, Germany. The other authors declare that they have no competing financial interests regarding this study.
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