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Jul 28, 2006

Neurofeedback for children with ADHD: a comparison of SCP- and theta/beta-protocols

Neurofeedback for children with ADHD: a comparison of SCP- and theta/beta-protocols

Prax Kinderpsychol Kinderpsychiatr. 2006;55(5):384-407

Authors: Leins U, Hinterberger T, Kaller S, Schober F, Weber C, Strehl U

Research groups have consistently reported on behavioral and cognitive improvements of children with ADHD after neurofeedback. However, neurofeedback has not been commonly accepted as a treatment for ADHD. This is due, in part, to several methodological limitations. The neurofeedback literature is further complicated by having several different training protocols. Differences between the clinical efficacy of such protocols have not been examined. This study addresses previous methodological shortcomings while comparing the training of theta-beta-frequencies (theta-beta-group) with the training of slow cortical potentials (SCP-group). Each group comprised of 19 children with ADHD that were blind to group assignment. The training procedure consisted of 30 sessions and a six months follow-up training. Pre-/post measures at pretest, the end of the training and the follow-up included tests of attention, intelligence and behavioral variables. After having already reported intermediate data (Strehl et al. 2004), this paper gives account on final results: Both groups are able to voluntarily regulate cortical activity, with the extent of learned self-regulation depending on task and condition. Both groups improve in attention and IQ. Parents and teachers report significant behavioral and cognitive improvements. Clinical effects for both groups remain stable six months after training. Groups do not differ in behavioral or cognitive outcome variables.

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