Brain-computer interface training combined with transcranial direct current stimulation in patients with chronic severe hemiparesis: Proof of concept study

Yuko Kasashima-Shindo, Toshiyuki Fujiwara, Junichi Ushiba, Yayoi Matsushika, Daiki Kamatani, Misa Oto, Takashi Ono, Atsuko Nishimoto, Keiichiro Shindo, Michiyuki Kawakami, Tetsuya Tsuji, Meigen Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Brain-computer interface technology has been applied to stroke patients to improve their motor function. Event-related desynchronization during motor imagery, which is used as a brain-computer interface trigger, is sometimes difficult to detect in stroke patients. Anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is known to increase event-related desynchronization. This study investigated the adjunctive effect of anodal tDCS for brain-computer interface training in patients with severe hemiparesis. Subjects: Eighteen patients with chronic stroke. Design: A non-randomized controlled study. Methods: Subjects were divided between a brain-computer interface group and a tDCS-brain-computer interface group and participated in a 10-day brain-computer interface training. Event-related desynchronization was detected in the affected hemisphere during motor imagery of the affected fingers. The tDCS-brain-computer interface group received anodal tDCS before brain-computer interface training. Event-related desynchronization was evaluated before and after the intervention. The Fugl-Meyer Assessment upper extremity motor score (FM-U) was assessed before, immediately after, and 3 months after, the intervention. Results: Event-related desynchronization was significantly increased in the tDCS-brain-computer interface group. The FM-U was significantly increased in both groups. The FM-U improvement was maintained at 3 months in the tDCS brain-computer interface group. Conclusion: Anodal tDCS can be a conditioning tool for brain-computer interface training in patients with severe hemiparetic stroke.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)318-324
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of rehabilitation medicine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Apr 1



  • Brain stimulation
  • Brain-machine interface
  • Electroencephalography
  • Event-related desynchronization
  • Rehabilitation
  • Stroke
  • Upper extremity motor function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation

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