A patient receiving transcranial direct current stimulation in the Aphasia Lab.If you or a loved one are near the Syracuse, NY area, please consider this research participation opportunity. Read the announcement on the Syracuse University website to learn more.

Researchers in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) are testing a cutting-edge method of electrical brain stimulation to help stroke patients suffering from a language disorder called aphasia. The National Institutes of Health-funded study, led by Ellyn Riley, associate professor in CSD, is currently recruiting participants who have had a stroke in the left side of their brain and who have experienced speech and language difficulties following their stroke.

Aphasia affects approximately one-third of individuals who have had a stroke. According to Riley, communication for these individuals can be very difficult and each person’s experience with aphasia is unique. The electrical brain stimulation used in the study is called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). It works by delivering a very small electrical current to specific parts of a person’s brain via sponge electrodes attached to their scalp. The positioning of these electrodes is thought to encourage specific parts of the brain to become active, making it easier for the neurons in those areas of the brain to send electrical signals to other neurons during speech and language therapy.

While transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is not one of the therapies the BART Foundation currently advocates for, it is an area worthy of attention and consideration for those with TBI/ABI.