On the importance of precise electrode placement for targeted transcranial electric stimulation

Alexander Opitz, Erin Yeagle, Axel Thielscher, Charles Schroeder, Ashesh D. Mehta, Michael P. Milham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

Transcranial electric stimulation (TES) is an increasingly popular method for non-invasive modulation of brain activity and a potential treatment for neuropsychiatric disorders. However, there are concerns about the reliability of its application because of variability in TES-induced intracranial electric fields across individuals. While realistic computational models offer can help to alleviate these concerns, their direct empirical validation is sparse, and their practical implications are not always clear. In this study, we combine direct intracranial measurements of electric fields generated by TES in surgical epilepsy patients with computational modeling. First, we directly validate the computational models and identify key parameters needed for accurate model predictions. Second, we derive practical guidelines for a reliable application of TES in terms of the precision of electrode placement needed to achieve a desired electric field distribution. Based on our results, we recommend electrode placement accuracy to be < 1 cm for a reliable application of TES across sessions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)560-567
Number of pages8
JournalNeuroImage
Volume181
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Supported by MH110217 , MH111439 , pilot funding from NKI and the University of Minnesota’s MnDRIVE (Minnesota’s Discovery, Research and Innovation Economy) Initiative. Transcranial electrical stimulation devices were obtained through an equipment award provided to NKI by the Child Mind Institute ( 1FD2013-1 ). AT received support from Lundbeckfonden ( R118-A11308 ) and NovoNordisk fonden ( NNF14OC0011413 ).

Funding Information:
Supported by MH110217, MH111439, pilot funding from NKI and the University of Minnesota's MnDRIVE (Minnesota's Discovery, Research and Innovation Economy) Initiative. Transcranial electrical stimulation devices were obtained through an equipment award provided to NKI by the Child Mind Institute (1FD2013-1). AT received support from Lundbeckfonden (R118-A11308) and NovoNordisk fonden (NNF14OC0011413).

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