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Applications of transcranial direct current stimulation in children and pediatrics


Rivera-Urbina, GN and Nitsche, MA and Vicario, CM and Molero-Chamizo, A, Applications of transcranial direct current stimulation in children and pediatrics, Reviews in the Neurosciences, 28, (2) pp. 173-184. ISSN 0334-1763 (2017) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 by Walter de Gruyter GmbH

DOI: doi:10.1515/revneuro-2016-0045


Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a neuromodulatory noninvasive brain stimulation tool with potential to increase or reduce regional and remote cortical excitability. Numerous studies have shown the ability of this technique to induce neuroplasticity and to modulate cognition and behavior in adults. Clinical studies have also demonstrated the ability of tDCS to induce therapeutic effects in several central nervous system disorders. However, knowledge about its ability to modulate brain functions in children or induce clinical improvements in pediatrics is limited. The objective of this review is to describe relevant data of some recent studies that may help to understand the potential of this technique in children with specific regard to effective and safe treatment of different developmental disorders in pediatrics. Overall, the results show that standard protocols of tDCS are well tolerated by children and have promising clinical effects. Nevertheless, treatment effects seem to be partially heterogeneous, and a case of a seizure in a child with previous history of infantile spasms and diagnosed epilepsy treated with tDCS for spasticity was reported. Further research is needed to determine safety criteria for tDCS use in children and to elucidate the particular neurophysiological changes induced by this neuromodulatory technique when it is applied in the developing brain.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:non-invasive brain stimulation, pediatric population, neurological disorders, psychiatric disorders, children, clinic, pediatrics, transcranial direct current stimulation
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Neurosciences
Research Field:Neurosciences not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health)
Objective Field:Neonatal and child health
UTAS Author:Vicario, CM (Dr Carmelo Vicario)
ID Code:114391
Year Published:2017 (online first 2016)
Web of Science® Times Cited:24
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2017-02-15
Last Modified:2018-03-23
Downloads:218 View Download Statistics

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