A Qualitative Study Exploring the Experience and Value of Flow Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) and Behaviour Therapy Training Software Used at Home for Community Mental Health Team (CMHT) Patients with Symptoms of Depression

Jul 10, 20242 min
Author's Profile picture
Dr. Himanshu Nirvan
Mave Health, ex AIIMS ex Safdarjung
tDCS and Behaviour Therapy Training Software Used at Home for CMHT Patients with Symptoms of Depression

Author Names:

  • Chris Griffiths, Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Northampton, UK
  • Kate Walker, Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Northampton, UK
  • Andy Willis, Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Northampton, UK
  • Published Date: February 27, 2024
  • Source: Open Journal of Depression

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The content provided here is an interpretation of a research paper for educational purposes. It is simplified to make the findings accessible to a general audience. For detailed information, please refer to the original research paper.

Abstract: 

This study explored the experiences and views of CMHT patients using Flow, a self-administered tDCS device with behavioural therapy training software, over six weeks. The qualitative approach involved in-depth interviews with 14 participants. Results indicated positive impacts on depressive symptoms, mood, motivation, and functioning, supporting Flow's feasibility, acceptability, and usability in a community mental health setting.

Key Concepts:

  • tDCS (Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation): A non-invasive brain stimulation method delivering weak electrical currents to the brain to treat depression.
  • CMHT (Community Mental Health Team): Provides mental health care within the community for individuals with severe mental health needs.
  • Behaviour Therapy Training: Software providing modules on exercise, nutrition, mindfulness, and sleep to complement tDCS treatment.

Procedure Highlight - Research Methodology:

  1. Participants: 14 individuals (7 males, 7 females) aged 21-63 years with depression symptoms.
  2. Study Design: Qualitative approach using semi-structured in-depth interviews.
  3. Data Collection: Participants used Flow for six weeks, followed by interviews to gather experiences.
  4. Analysis: Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) was applied to understand participant experiences.

Results - Findings of Research:

  • Most participants reported that Flow was easy to use and integrate into their daily routines.
  • Positive impacts included reduced depressive symptoms, and improved mood, motivation, and overall functioning.
  • Some participants experienced mild, transient physical sensations during tDCS sessions but continued using Flow.
  • Flow was viewed as a viable alternative to other depression treatments, especially for those experiencing side effects from medications.

Discussion and Conclusion: 

The study supports the use of Flow as a feasible, acceptable, and valuable treatment option for CMHT patients with depression. Flow's ease of use and the combined behavioural therapy training contributed to the positive outcomes. The findings highlight the importance of offering alternative treatments to existing therapies like antidepressants and psychotherapy, especially for patients who do not respond well to these treatments.

Link To Original Paper : A Qualitative Study Exploring the Experience and Value of Flow Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) and Behaviour Therapy Training Software Used at Home for Community Mental Health Team (CMHT) Patients with Symptoms of Depression

Copyright and License Information: This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY 4.0). For more information, visit Creative Commons License.

Author's Profile picture
Dr. Himanshu Nirvan
Mave Health, ex AIIMS ex Safdarjung
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