Clinical efficacy of a new automated hemoencephalographic neurofeedback protocol

Span J Psychol. 2012 Nov;15(3):930-41. doi: 10.5209/rev_sjop.2012.v15.n3.39385.


Among the ongoing attempts to enhance cognitive performance, an emergent and yet underrepresented venue is brought by hemoencefalographic neurofeedback (HEG). This paper presents three related advances in HEG neurofeedback for cognitive enhancement: a) a new HEG protocol for cognitive enhancement, as well as b) the results of independent measures of biological efficacy (EEG brain maps) extracted in three phases, during a one year follow up case study; c) the results of the first controlled clinical trial of HEG, designed to assess the efficacy of the technique for cognitive enhancement of an adult and neurologically intact population. The new protocol was developed in the environment of a software that organizes digital signal algorithms in a flowchart format. Brain maps were produced through 10 brain recordings. The clinical trial used a working memory test as its independent measure of achievement. The main conclusion of this study is that the technique appears to be clinically promising. Approaches to cognitive performance from a metabolic viewpoint should be explored further. However, it is particularly important to note that, to our knowledge, this is the world's first controlled clinical study on the matter and it is still early for an ultimate evaluation of the technique.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain Mapping / methods
  • Controlled Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Electroencephalography
  • Equipment Design / instrumentation
  • Equipment Design / methods*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Memory, Short-Term / physiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurofeedback / instrumentation
  • Neurofeedback / methods*
  • Neurofeedback / physiology
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Software Design
  • Spectroscopy, Near-Infrared / instrumentation
  • Spectroscopy, Near-Infrared / methods*
  • Treatment Outcome