I've been noticing a growing number of announcements of clinical trials investigating the efficacy of transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS). Eventually, they were getting hard to ignore. So I got to wondering whether this was just me or whether there was genuinely an identifiable increase.
A lot of the trials are announced on clinicaltrials.gov, so that’s the first place I looked. Here’s a graph of the number of trials that were announced each year since the inception of the site in February 2000.
So it certainly does seem that there has been a huge increase in the number of clinical tDCS trials being undertaken. These are not all medical in nature. Many published trials involve investigation of the effects of tDCS on healthy participants.
The vast majority of the clinical trials have not published results yet, but we at foc.us greatly welcome these. The scientific studies conducted in universities tend to have smaller sample sizes and, as we know, meta-analyses of these have had mixed outcome.
Clinical trials tend to have larger samples sizes so they can throw valuable light on just how effective tDCS interventions are. We'll be following and reporting on the results as best we can.