45 year old Female with Depression, Anxiety, and Confusion
Female patient with long history of depression, anxiety, confusion and short term memory loss. After four months of Neurofeedback training, she reports a significant improvement in mental alertness and clarity of thinking, and remediation of depression and anxiety.
A 45 year old female presented to our center with complaints of moderate to severe depression, anxiety, confusion, fear, short-term memory loss, dysarticulation and difficulty concentrating. Her past medical history was significant for meningitis at the age of two years, environmental allergies and four automobile accidents in which she sustained whiplash injuries between October, 1994 and May, 1996. She relates that her symptoms escalated after her auto accidents.
She had sought professional counseling during the past ten years with little alleviation of symptoms. At the time she came to us she was struggling to function as the owner operator of a small consulting firm. She was finding her work responsibilities and interpersonal relationships more and more difficult to maintain due to a decreasing ability to problem solve, lack of short term memory and dysarticulation. She appeared overwhelmed by the symptoms she was experiencing.
An initial assessment and interview was done on April 21, 1997, which included a TOVA test. Her initial TOVA results were essentially normal with her impulsivity score and variability score being in the low normal range at 92 and 97 respectively.
She was started with right-sided, C-4 SMR training which helped to decrease the anxiety she was experiencing, although it began to make her feel a little “sluggish”. She was then switched to straight left-sided C-3 Beta to counteract the lethargy she was experiencing. After a couple of sessions of this protocol left-sided and right-sided training were combined in the same session. It was soon clear that she did not tolerate right-sided training as she became increasingly lethargic and irritable, with some noticeable emotional lability.
As of May 15, 1997, she had undergone seven sessions which had included some right and left-sided training. She was then started on left-sided Beta protocols and has progressed tremendously ever since. At her twentieth session on July 15, 1997, she felt that most of her symptoms had abated except for a “fearfulness” she described about tackling life problems and working through them. Alpha training was introduced at this time followed in the same session by left-sided C-3 Beta training. After only a few of these sessions she described the fearfulness as having “left”. She reported feeling as if she were grounded, centered, and could work through problems without difficulty. She was retested by TOVA on July 29, 1997, and her impulsivity and variability scores had increased to 99 and 105 respectively. The other parameters were still within normal ranges and her response time had increased by seven points.
Today she has completed approximately four months of Neurofeedback training, during which time she has undergone a total of twenty-six Neurofeedback sessions. She is compelled to tell her story because of what she describes as a profound improvement in her symptoms. The depression has lifted and her outlook on life is good and one of manageability again. She describes her mental alertness and clarity in thinking as being significantly improved. She is able to manage work and personal responsibilities with a new confidence that she has never known. She describes herself as feeling grounded and centered. She feels like she can set goals and reach them.
Of course, not every patient who undergoes Neurofeedback training gets this kind of change. However, we do find improved outcomes in approximately 85 to 90 percent of our clients. Consistency in treatment and a positive attitude are important for success.