home-based active tDCS for Dementia

Phase-Based Progress Estimates
The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX
Dementia+2 More
home-based active tDCS - Device
All Sexes
What conditions do you have?

Study Summary

This study is evaluating whether a type of brain stimulation may help improve apathy in individuals with Alzheimer's disease.

See full description

Eligible Conditions

  • Dementia
  • Caregivers of People With Alzheimer's Disease or Related Dementia (ADRD)

Treatment Effectiveness

Effectiveness Progress

1 of 3

Study Objectives

This trial is evaluating whether home-based active tDCS will improve 6 primary outcomes and 7 secondary outcomes in patients with Dementia. Measurement will happen over the course of 6 weeks post-treatment.

6 weeks post-treatment
Acceptability of using the home-based tDCS as measured by the tDCS experience questionnaire
How safe home-based tDCS treatment is as measured by reporting side effects.
How satisfied the patient was with the treatment as measured by the tDCS experience questionnaire.
Safety of using the home-based tDCS
Week 6
Change in apathy as assessed by the Brief Dimensional Apathy Scale (b-DAS)
Change in apathy as measured by the Apathy Evaluation Scale (AES)
Change in dementia-related behavioral symptoms as assessed by the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI) scale
Change in dementia-related behavioral symptoms as assessed by the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI-Q) scale
Week 6
Change in cognition as evaluated by the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE)
Change in cognition as evaluated by the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA)
Change in depressive symptoms as assessed by the Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia
Year 3
Feasibility of using the home-based tDCS
Number of participants included and who successfully completed the protocol.

Trial Safety

Trial Design

2 Treatment Groups

1 of 2
Control Group
1 of 2
Experimental Treatment
Non-Treatment Group

This trial requires 40 total participants across 2 different treatment groups

This trial involves 2 different treatments. Home-based Active TDCS is the primary treatment being studied. Participants will all receive the same treatment. Some patients will receive a placebo treatment. The treatments being tested are not being studied for commercial purposes.

Control Group

Trial Logistics

Trial Timeline

Approximate Timeline
Screening: ~3 weeks
Treatment: Varies
Reporting: through study completion, an average of 3 years
This trial has the following approximate timeline: 3 weeks for initial screening, variable treatment timelines, and roughly through study completion, an average of 3 years for reporting.

Who is running the study

Principal Investigator
A. L. T.
Prof. Antonio L. Teixeira, Professor
The University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston

Closest Location

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston - Houston, TX

Eligibility Criteria

This trial is for patients born any sex aged 18 and older. There are 3 eligibility criteria to participate in this trial as listed below.

Mark “yes” if the following statements are true for you:
at least three months of stable doses of cholinesterase inhibitors, memantine, and other psychotropic medications. show original
The National Institute of Aging - Alzheimer's Association diagnostic criteria can be used to diagnose possible or probable ADRD. show original
The individual has clinically significant apathy for at least four weeks, which is diagnosed according to the 2018 Apathy Diagnostic Criteria or determined by an NPI-Q apathy score of 4 or greater (i.e., indicating a severity of 'moderate' or greater and caregiver distress of 'mild' or greater). show original

Patient Q&A Section

What are the signs of dementia?

"Dementia manifests as cognitive, behavioural or psychomotor problems. Symptoms are not necessarily present in all cases. Physicians should have a high index of suspicion of dementia in patients having dementia symptoms." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

How many people get dementia a year in the United States?

"About 1.5 million people suffer from dementia every year in the United States. Of these, 75% of the dementia cases were Alzheimer's disease, 17% were other forms of dementia as well as other non-Alzheimer dementia." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

Can dementia be cured?

"We have not failed to find positive results in the last 6 years, but the majority of positive results remain to be confirmed in larger and more randomized trials." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

What are common treatments for dementia?

"Recent findings highlights a wide range of therapies being used for patients with dementia, including physical activity, medications, social and other assistance, psychological therapy, and assisted dying." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

What is dementia?

"More than a million Americans are currently diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, a disorder often mistaken for or confused with dementia. Most people with dementia show symptoms of mood disorders such as depression. Thus, people with dementia may be at risk for developing depressive symptoms due to co-occurring mood disorders. As our knowledge of dementia gains more understanding, and the prevalence of co-occurring mood disorders increases, further research on treatment strategies for depressive symptoms in individuals living with dementia becomes increasingly important." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

What causes dementia?

"Several genetic mutations are associated with the development of mild cognitive impairment, which in turn is a precursor of dementia. In the United States, the strongest known risk factors are age and genetic ancestry, which influence brain aging. However, several environmental risks are also associated with dementia, such as the use of certain drugs (antihypotrophic drugs and antipsychotics used in the treatment of psychosis), and heavy coffee consumption may exacerbate Parkinson's disease. Diabetes mellitus may be a risk factor for dementia, and several conditions are associated with both Type 2 diabetes and dementia, including increased serum uric acid level, hypertension, hyperglycemia, hypercholesterolemia, obesity, and poor diet." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

What is home-based active tdcs?

"In order to facilitate active, rewarding, and neurorehabilitative functions using home-based tDCS, the following conditions should be respected: (1) high EEG power; (2) large current densities; (3) a stimulation profile that is in balance between high charge and sparse charge, and (4) large spatial summation." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

Have there been any new discoveries for treating dementia?

"Recent advances in research has led to new possible treatments but some of these treatments have not achieved the same level of success as was previously reported. I would say that drugs and other treatments still play a major part in treating dementias despite all of the other things that we are trying to do today. In addition, the future looks hopeful with the discovery of other forms of neuroplasticity. We still face a lot of obstacles, though some of these are in our own hands. A great number of obstacles are in our minds because of our ignorance and bias. We know, though, that our own minds and bodies are constantly changing and our brains actually do have the capacity to heal themselves." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

Does home-based active tdcs improve quality of life for those with dementia?

"This small, quasi-randomized, pilot study provides preliminary but reassuring evidence that home-based active tDCS can facilitate an improvement in health and well-being in people with dementia. This is potentially exciting news for people with dementia and their families." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

What are the common side effects of home-based active tdcs?

"Recent findings provides information on the common side effects for home-based active tDCS, and may be of use in determining the most effective clinical application of home-based active tDCS. We conclude that home-based active tDCS is at least as safe as clinic-based tDCS." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

Is home-based active tdcs typically used in combination with any other treatments?

"This preliminary study on this kind of therapy suggests that (in comparison with other approaches) combined treatment using tDCS and other treatment modalities may be effective in improving cognition in patients suffering from mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease." - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer

What does home-based active tdcs usually treat?

"A group of home-based tACS-treated patients had similar improvement to that of the clinical control group on several outcome measures that were used (e.g., ADAS-cog score and depression scores). A larger sample sizes and more sites need to be tested. Results from a recent paper support the hypothesis that home-based tACS might be an effective treatment for mild-to-moderate depression in patients with mild-to-moderate Alzheimer's disease" - Anonymous Online Contributor

Unverified Answer
Please Note: These questions and answers are submitted by anonymous patients, and have not been verified by our internal team.
See if you qualify for this trial
Get access to this novel treatment for Dementia by sharing your contact details with the study coordinator.