Design and Validation of an FPGA-Based Configurable Transcranial Doppler Neurofeedback System for Chronic Pain Patients
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AuthorRey, Beatriz; Rodríguez, Alejandro; Lloréns-Bufort, Enrique; Tembl, José; Muñoz García, Miguel Ángel; Herrero-Bosch, Vicente; Monzo, Jose M.
Transcranial doppler ultrasoundNeurofeedbackDigital signal processingChronic painFibromyalgiaFPGASystem on Chip
Rey, B. [et al.]. Design and Validation of an FPGA-Based Configurable Transcranial Doppler Neurofeedback System for Chronic Pain Patients. Sensors 2018, 18, 2278.
SponsorshipThis research was funded by Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad, Spain, grant number PSI2013-48260-C3-2-R. The APC was funded by Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad, Spain, grant number PSI2013-48260-C3-2-R.
Neurofeedback is a self-regulation technique that can be applied to learn to voluntarily control cerebral activity in specific brain regions. In this work, a Transcranial Doppler-based configurable neurofeedback system is proposed and described. The hardware configuration is based on the Red Pitaya board, which gives great flexibility and processing power to the system. The parameter to be trained can be selected between several temporal, spectral, or complexity features from the cerebral blood flow velocity signal in different vessels. As previous studies have found alterations in these parameters in chronic pain patients, the system could be applied to help them to voluntarily control these parameters. Two protocols based on different temporal lengths of the training periods have been proposed and tested with six healthy subjects that were randomly assigned to one of the protocols at the beginning of the procedure. For the purposes of the testing, the trained parameter was the mean cerebral blood flow velocity in the aggregated data from the two anterior cerebral arteries. Results show that, using the proposed neurofeedback system, the two groups of healthy volunteers can learn to self-regulate a parameter from their brain activity in a reduced number of training sessions.