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Project

Biofeedback for treatment of anxiety associated with chronic spinal cord injury

Funder: Craig H Neilsen Foundation

Funding period
USD 200 K
Funding amount
Abstract
As many as 32% of individuals with spinal cord injury/disorder (SCI/D) experience symptomatic anxiety; however, many commonly used strategies to treat anxiety, e.g., progressive muscle relaxation are limited for individuals with SCI/D because of neurological impairments. Biofeedback heart rate variability (HRV) training is a treatment approaches for anxiety disorders that appears to be feasible for individuals with SCI/D, but has not been tested. HRV training uses biofeedback to train individuals to alter their breathing and heart rate using a technique called “resonance frequency training” to attain coherence between their heart rate and respiration rate. HRV training has been shown to bolster psychological resilience and behavioral adaptability to changes in social or environmental demands. The proposed pilot study is designed with three primary aims: (1) to test the safety and feasibility of a biofeedback intervention for individuals with complete and incomplete tetraplegia to promote coherence between HRV and respiration rate, (2) to compare the effects of a biofeedback intervention to a wait list control group with physiological monitoring on participants’ ability to reach coherence, and (3) to compare the effectiveness of a biofeedback intervention to a wait list control group for reducing psychophysiological stress and self-reported anxiety. Thirty individuals with chronic tetraplegia and anxiety will be evenly allocated into one of two groups (biofeedback or control group). Participants in the biofeedback group will undergo psychophysiological monitoring while also participating in biofeedback training twice a week for four weeks (8 sessions). Participants in the control group will undergo 30 minutes of psychophysiological monitoring twice a week for four weeks (8 sessions), but will not receive biofeedback training. All participants will complete pre-post treatment anxiety inventories and physiological monitoring, as well as physiological and symptom monitoring during each session. Given the small sample size of the proposed pilot study, the analysis will focus on detecting a signal that HRV training reduces anxiety among individuals with tetraplegia and answering feasibility questions regarding the research processes, resources, management procedures, and scientific methods for conducting a randomized controlled trial. (CHN: PSR chn:wdg)
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System

Categories
  • FOR (ANZSRC)

    1103 Clinical Sciences

  • FOR (ANZSRC)

    1701 Psychology

  • RCDC

    Injury (total) Accidents/Adverse Effects

  • RCDC

    Injury - Trauma - (Head and Spine)

  • RCDC

    Mental Health

  • RCDC

    Neurosciences

  • RCDC

    Mind and Body

  • RCDC

    Spinal Cord Injury

  • RCDC

    Anxiety Disorders

  • RCDC

    Behavioral and Social Science

  • RCDC

    Clinical Research

  • RCDC

    Clinical Trials and Supportive Activities

  • RCDC

    Neurodegenerative

  • HRCS HC

    Injuries and Accidents

  • HRCS HC

    Mental Health

  • HRCS RAC

    6.6 Psychological and behavioural

  • Health Research Areas

    Clinical

  • Broad Research Areas

    Clinical Medicine and Science