Deans' stroke musings

Changing stroke rehab and research worldwide now.Time is Brain!Just think of all the trillions and trillions of neurons that DIE each day because there are NO effective hyperacute therapies besides tPA(only 12% effective). I have 493 posts on hyperacute therapy, enough for researchers to spend decades proving them out. These are my personal ideas and blog on stroke rehabilitation and stroke research. Do not attempt any of these without checking with your medical provider. Unless you join me in agitating, when you need these therapies they won't be there.

What this blog is for:

Shortly after getting out of the hospital and getting NO information on the process or protocols of stroke rehabilitation and recovery I started searching on the internet and found that no other survivor received useful information. This is an attempt to cover all stroke rehabilitation information that should be readily available to survivors so they can talk with informed knowledge to their medical staff. It's quite disgusting that this information is not available from every stroke association and doctors group.
My back ground story is here:

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Neurophysiologic Correlates of Post-stroke Mood and Emotional Control

My post-stroke mood gets worse and worse every time I find out how fucking incompetent our stroke medical world is. But I control it quite well except for a tiny bit of swearing on my blog. My mood on my recovery is great, life is great. I am definitely not emotionally disturbed, I tried analyzing my therapist to see where she was going with her questions.
  • 1Spaulding Neuromodulation Center, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA
  • 2Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine Institute of the University of São Paulo, Medical School General Hospital, São Paulo, Brazil
  • 3Service of Interdisciplinary Neuromodulation, Laboratory of Neurosciences (LIM-27), Department and Institute of Psychiatry, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
Objective: Emotional disturbance is a common complication of stroke significantly affecting functional recovery and quality of life. Identifying relevant neurophysiologic markers associated with post-stroke emotional disturbance may lead to a better understanding of this disabling condition, guiding the diagnosis, development of new interventions and the assessments of treatment response.
Methods: Thirty-five subjects with chronic stroke were enrolled in this study. The emotion sub-domain of Stroke Impact Scale (SIS-Emotion) was used to assess post-stroke mood and emotional control. The relation between SIS-Emotion and neurophysiologic measures was assessed by using covariance mapping and univariate linear regression. Multivariate analyses were conducted to identify and adjust for potential confounders. Neurophysiologic measures included power asymmetry and coherence assessed by electroencephalography (EEG); and motor threshold, intracortical inhibition (ICI) and intracortical facilitation (ICF) measured by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).
Results: Lower scores on SIS-Emotion was associated with (1) frontal EEG power asymmetry in alpha and beta bands, (2) central EEG power asymmetry in alpha and theta bands, and (3) lower inter-hemispheric coherence over frontal and central areas in alpha band. SIS-Emotion also correlated with higher ICF and MT in the unlesioned hemisphere as measured by TMS.
Conclusions: To our knowledge, this is the first study using EEG and TMS to index neurophysiologic changes associated with post-stroke mood and emotional control. Our results suggest that inter-hemispheric imbalance measured by EEG power and coherence, as well as an increased ICF in the unlesioned hemisphere measured by TMS might be relevant markers associated with post-stroke mood and emotional control which can guide future studies investigating new diagnostic and treatment modalities in stroke rehabilitation.


Emotional disturbance is a common complication of stroke (Annoni et al., 2006). About 30% of stroke survivors develop anxiety and depressive symptoms critically affecting functional recovery (Parikh et al., 1990; Hackett and Anderson, 2005) and quality of life (Robinson, 1997; Jonsson et al., 2005). Moreover, a significant number of patients remain undetected and therefore untreated due to difficulties in diagnosis (Dafer et al., 2008; El Husseini et al., 2012; Ayerbe et al., 2013). Investigation of neurophysiological markers associated with post-stroke mood and emotional control could have important implications in the development of new interventions as well as the assessment of current diagnostic and therapeutic modalities in stroke rehabilitation. For example, neurophysiologically guided interventions, such as EEG biofeedback entrainment, has already been shown to be effective in stroke patients with physical and cognitive impairments (Nelson, 2007). Similarly in depression, qEEG has been used to detect inter-hemispheric imbalance in cortical activity that has lead to the application of new therapeutic approaches such as TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation) and tDCS (transcranial direct current stimulation; Rosenfeld et al., 1996; Linden, 2014).
The exact causes of post-stroke emotional disturbance (PS-ED) are still unknown. Different mechanisms including direct effects of ischemia to mood regulating neural networks (Starkstein et al., 1988; Beblo et al., 1999) and a psychosocial (Gainotti et al., 1999) model have been proposed to explain PS-ED (Whyte and Mulsant, 2002). Additionally, several factors involving the severity of injury, cognitive impairment, pre-morbid depression, disability and localization of the stroke have been identified as predictors of PS-ED (Robinson, 1986; Hackett and Anderson, 2005; Ayerbe et al., 2013). However, some of these factors were inconsistent across studies. For example, earlier studies showed that left sided lesions that are close to the frontal lobe have been associated with depression (Robinson, 1986) whereas more recent studies showed no relation between the localization of stroke and depression after stroke (Carson et al., 2000).
Quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG) is a safe, cost-effective technique used to assess cortical activity and has been valuable in assessing emotion related networks. Among the qEEG parameters, frontal alpha power asymmetry has been especially of interest given its relation to emotional processes and pathological conditions such as major depressive disorder (MDD) and anxiety (Coan and Allen, 2004; Thibodeau et al., 2006; Harmon-Jones et al., 2010). Yet, it is unknown whether emotional disturbance secondary to other neurological conditions, such as stroke, is associated with similar EEG changes. In fact, qEEG has already been used in stroke as a predictive measurement for prognosis and clinical management in motor recovery (Finnigan and van Putten, 2013). However, use of qEEG in non-motor outcomes of stroke is limited (Schleiger et al., 2014) and to our knowledge there is no study assessing the qEEG correlates of post-stroke depression and anxiety.
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is another technique that is useful in assessing cortical activity in both MDD and stroke. TMS studies assessing changes in cortical activity in patients with MDD have shown decreased excitability in the left hemisphere (Maeda et al., 2000; Fitzgerald et al., 2004), and decreased motor threshold in the right hemisphere (Bajbouj et al., 2006). In stroke, TMS studies demonstrated that inter-hemispheric asymmetry in cortical activity (Murase et al., 2004) is associated with functional recovery after stroke (Hendricks et al., 2002). Therefore, together with EEG, TMS could potentially help elucidate changes in cortical activity related to PS-ED.
In this cross-sectional preliminary analysis of 35 stroke subjects we investigated the associations between the emotion sub-domain of Stroke Impact Scale (SIS-Emotion) and several neurophysiologic measures obtained by EEG and TMS when adjusted for potential confounders such as age and time since stroke. Given that hemispheric asymmetry plays an important role in both stroke and mood disorders, we hypothesized that post-stroke changes in mood and emotional control is associated with inter-hemispheric imbalance that can be indexed by EEG and TMS.

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