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Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) for improving activities of daily living, and physical and cognitive functioning, in people after stroke

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, March 2016
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (91st percentile)
  • Good Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (65th percentile)

Mentioned by

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29 tweeters
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2 Facebook pages
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1 Wikipedia page

Citations

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55 Dimensions

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291 Mendeley
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Title
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) for improving activities of daily living, and physical and cognitive functioning, in people after stroke
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, March 2016
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd009645.pub3
Pubmed ID
Authors

Bernhard Elsner, Joachim Kugler, Marcus Pohl, Jan Mehrholz

Abstract

Stroke is one of the leading causes of disability worldwide. Functional impairment, resulting in poor performance in activities of daily living (ADLs) among stroke survivors is common. Current rehabilitation approaches have limited effectiveness in improving ADL performance, function, muscle strength and cognitive abilities (including spatial neglect) after stroke, but a possible adjunct to stroke rehabilitation might be non-invasive brain stimulation by transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to modulate cortical excitability, and hence to improve ADL performance, arm and leg function, muscle strength and cognitive abilities (including spatial neglect), dropouts and adverse events in people after stroke. To assess the effects of tDCS on ADLs, arm and leg function, muscle strength and cognitive abilities (including spatial neglect), dropouts and adverse events in people after stroke. We searched the Cochrane Stroke Group Trials Register (February 2015), the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL; the Cochrane Library; 2015, Issue 2), MEDLINE (1948 to February 2015), EMBASE (1980 to February 2015), CINAHL (1982 to February 2015), AMED (1985 to February 2015), Science Citation Index (1899 to February 2015) and four additional databases. In an effort to identify further published, unpublished and ongoing trials, we searched trials registers and reference lists, handsearched conference proceedings and contacted authors and equipment manufacturers. This is the update of an existing review. In the previous version of this review we focused on the effects of tDCS on ADLs and function. In this update, we broadened our inclusion criteria to compare any kind of active tDCS for improving ADLs, function, muscle strength and cognitive abilities (including spatial neglect) versus any kind of placebo or control intervention. Two review authors independently assessed trial quality and risk of bias (JM and MP) and extracted data (BE and JM). If necessary, we contacted study authors to ask for additional information. We collected information on dropouts and adverse events from the trial reports. We included 32 studies involving a total of 748 participants aged above 18 with acute, postacute or chronic ischaemic or haemorrhagic stroke. We also identified 55 ongoing studies. The risk of bias did not differ substantially for different comparisons and outcomes.We found nine studies with 396 participants examining the effects of tDCS versus sham tDCS (or any other passive intervention) on our primary outcome measure, ADLs after stroke. We found evidence of effect regarding ADL performance at the end of the intervention period (standardised mean difference (SMD) 0.24, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.03 to 0.44; inverse variance method with random-effects model; moderate quality evidence). Six studies with 269 participants assessed the effects of tDCS on ADLs at the end of follow-up, and found improved ADL performance (SMD 0.31, 95% CI 0.01 to 0.62; inverse variance method with random-effects model; moderate quality evidence). However, the results did not persist in a sensitivity analysis including only trials of good methodological quality.One of our secondary outcome measures was upper extremity function: 12 trials with a total of 431 participants measured upper extremity function at the end of the intervention period, revealing no evidence of an effect in favour of tDCS (SMD 0.01, 95% CI -0.48 to 0.50 for studies presenting absolute values (low quality evidence) and SMD 0.32, 95% CI -0.51 to 1.15 (low quality evidence) for studies presenting change values; inverse variance method with random-effects model). Regarding the effects of tDCS on upper extremity function at the end of follow-up, we identified four studies with a total of 187 participants (absolute values) that showed no evidence of an effect (SMD 0.01, 95% CI -0.48 to 0.50; inverse variance method with random-effects model; low quality evidence). Ten studies with 313 participants reported outcome data for muscle strength at the end of the intervention period, but in the corresponding meta-analysis there was no evidence of an effect. Three studies with 156 participants reported outcome data on muscle strength at follow-up, but there was no evidence of an effect.In six of 23 studies (26%), dropouts, adverse events or deaths that occurred during the intervention period were reported, and the proportions of dropouts and adverse events were comparable between groups (risk difference (RD) 0.01, 95% CI -0.02 to 0.03; Mantel-Haenszel method with random-effects model; low quality evidence; analysis based only on studies that reported either on dropouts, or on adverse events, or on both). However, this effect may be underestimated due to reporting bias. At the moment, evidence of very low to moderate quality is available on the effectiveness of tDCS (anodal/cathodal/dual) versus control (sham/any other intervention) for improving ADL performance after stroke. However, there are many ongoing randomised trials that could change the quality of evidence in the future. Future studies should particularly engage those who may benefit most from tDCS after stroke and in the effects of tDCS on upper and lower limb function, muscle strength and cognitive abilities (including spatial neglect). Dropouts and adverse events should be routinely monitored and presented as secondary outcomes. They should also address methodological issues by adhering to the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) statement.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 29 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 291 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
India 1 <1%
Germany 1 <1%
Portugal 1 <1%
Chile 1 <1%
United Kingdom 1 <1%
Netherlands 1 <1%
Unknown 285 98%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 57 20%
Student > Ph. D. Student 40 14%
Researcher 40 14%
Unspecified 36 12%
Student > Bachelor 32 11%
Other 86 30%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 95 33%
Unspecified 52 18%
Nursing and Health Professions 37 13%
Neuroscience 36 12%
Psychology 15 5%
Other 56 19%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 22. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 19 April 2019.
All research outputs
#682,879
of 12,963,942 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
#2,260
of 10,415 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#21,749
of 265,993 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
#66
of 194 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 12,963,942 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 94th percentile: it's in the top 10% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 10,415 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 20.5. This one has done well, scoring higher than 78% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 265,993 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 91% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 194 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 65% of its contemporaries.