Electrical Brain Stimulation (EBS) is a method of delivering electrical stimulation to the brain in order to alter brain activity and treat various neurological conditions. The stimulation can be delivered through a number of methods, including transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), and deep brain stimulation (DBS).
Electrical brain stimulation (EBS), also known as focal brain stimulation (FBS), is a type of electrotherapy used in research and clinical neurobiology to stimulate a neuron or neural network in the brain by using an electric current to directly or indirectly excite its cell membrane. EBS is used for research or as a treatment.
tDCS involves the application of a weak direct current to the scalp, while TMS uses a magnetic field to stimulate nerve cells in the brain. DBS involves the implantation of electrodes into specific areas of the brain, which then deliver a continuous electrical stimulation to those areas.
Microstimulation activates neurons sparsely around the electrode even at low currents (as low as 10 μA) up to four millimeters away, according to two-photon excitation microscopy. This occurs without specifically selecting other neurons much closer to the electrode’s tip. This is because the activation of neurons is determined by whether or not they have axons or dendrites that pass within a radius of 15 μm of the electrode tip. The volume around the tip that activates neuron axons and dendrites increases as the current is increased, as does the number of neurons activated. The most likely cause of activation is direct depolarization rather than synaptic activation.
EBS has been used to treat a range of conditions, including depression, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, and chronic pain. While research into the efficacy of EBS is still ongoing, some studies have shown promising results for certain conditions. However, it is important to note that EBS is still considered an experimental treatment in many cases and further research is needed to fully understand its potential benefits and risks.
It is important to note that EBS should only be administered by trained medical professionals and under the guidance of a doctor. If you are considering EBS as a treatment option, it is important to discuss the potential risks and benefits with your healthcare provider.