Passive Infrared Hemoencephalography
Passive Infrared Hemoencephalograpy (pIRHEG) is a specialized neurofeedback technique that uses infrared signals from the brain based on blood flow dynamics instead of using the electrical activity of traditional neurofeedback. Participants learn to increase cerebral blood flow to a specified region of the brain, consequently increasing brain activity and performance on tasks involving that region of the brain. This technique has shown clinical benefit in helping individuals with migraine headaches, chronic headaches and depression from headaches. There has been some evidence indicating that pIRHEG is a good treatment to help with emotion regulation in autism. pIRHEG has also been shown to be effective for improving ADHD symptoms when participants learn to maintain a constant focus while relaxing.
What to Expect
There is universal agreement that the cerebrovascular system is significantly involved in the headache process. When depression is also a component of headaches, the pIRHEG sensor is placed over the left eye because hypoactivation of the left prefrontal cortex is associated with depression symptoms.
Bednarczyk, E., Remier, B., Weikert, C., Nelson, A., Reed, R. (1998). Global cerebral blood flow, blood volume, and oxygen metabolism in patients with migraine headache. Neurology, 50, 1736-1740.
Carmen, J. (2001, October 25). Passive Infrared Hemoencephalography (piRHEG). Cephalalgia,18(22), 22-25
Mitsikostas, D., Thomas, A., (1999) Comorbidity of headache and depressive disorders. Cephalalgia, 18(22), 22-25.
Coben, R., Linden, M. & Myers, T.E. (2010). Neurofeedback for autism spectrum disorder: a review of the literature. Applied Psychophysiology Biofeedback, 35, 83–105.
Moskowitz, M. (1998), Migraine and Stroke – a review of cerebral blood flow.
Tinius, T. (2004). New Developments in Blood Flow Hemoencephalography. Hawthorne Press