Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) is an area of research that we have helped pioneer. We have been using this non-invasive brain stimulation(NIBS) successfully for more than 10 years. We use it for language restoration. These include not only individuals with stroke-induced aphasia, but also Primary Progressive Aphasia, autism, brain injury, and other neurological conditions that affect language.
tDCS refers to the application of mild stimulation to the scalp. This permits very small doses of electromagnetic waves to stimulate the cerebral cortex – and this achieves brain plasticity. tDCS refers to restructuring and creating new neural networks – neural plasticity – which helps in the reconstruction of functional language.
The more patients with aphasia we treat the more good scientific questions and answers appear. An example is discovering that restoring grammar to those with chronic aphasia is just as important as helping persons retrieve words that they can not recall when needed. Our scientific investigation and all have been successful in restoring language over time and no investigation has shown any side effects.
Our goal is to have tDCS part of the initial treatment plan for a patient with stroke and aphasia while still in early rehabilitation. Until then, we recommend beginning therapy as soon as possible, to obtain the best outcome. The great majority of our patients are more than 5 years after their stroke. They still receiving speech therapy, but not unfortunately making progress in speech production
The ability to speak fluently, clearly and without difficulty is our goal. I speak many languages – a multilingual doctor/professor. This helps people whose naive language is not English. Our ability to talk is one of the most important gifts we have been given. I for one never take it for granted.