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Treatment of Cortical Myoclonus With Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC) Identifier:
First received: November 3, 1999
Last updated: March 3, 2008
Last verified: January 2002

Myoclonus is a condition related to epilepsy of involuntary twitching or jerking of the limbs.

The purpose of this study is to determine if stimulation of the brain with magnetic pulses can decrease myoclonus. Researchers believe that this may be possible because in studies on normal volunteers, magnetic stimulation made areas of the brain difficult to activate for several minutes. In addition, early studies on patients with myoclonus have shown magnetic stimulation to be effective at decreasing involuntary movements.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive technique that can be used to stimulate brain activity and gather information about brain function. It is very useful when studying the areas of the brain and spinal cord related to motor activity (motor cortex and corticospinal tract). Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) involves the placement of coil of wire (electromagnet) on the patient's scalp and rapidly turning on and off the electrical current. The changing magnetic field produces weak electrical currents in the brain near the coil. This permits non-invasive, relatively localized stimulation of the surface of the brain (cerebral cortex). The effect of magnetic stimulation varies, depending upon the location, intensity and frequency of the magnetic pulses.

Researchers plan to use rTMS for 10 days on patients participating in the study. The 10 day period will be broken into 5 days of active repetitive magnetic stimulation and 5 days of placebo "ineffective" stimulation. At the end of the 10 day period, if the results show that rTMS was beneficial, patients may undergo an additional 5 days of active rTMS.

Condition Intervention Phase
Movement Disorder Myoclonus Nervous System Disease Device: Magstim Super Rapid Stimulator Phase 1

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Treatment of Cortical Myoclonus With Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):

Estimated Enrollment: 10
Study Start Date: January 1997
Estimated Study Completion Date: January 2002
Detailed Description:
Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) at frequencies in the single Hz range causes a decrease in the excitability of the primary motor cortex and there is preliminary evidence that it can suppress abnormal excess cortical activity. We plan to test 1 Hz rTMS as treatment for cortical myoclonus.

Ages Eligible for Study:   Child, Adult, Senior
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Age 5 to 90 with severe cortical myoclonus.

No intracranial metal hardware (excluding dental fillings), pacemakers, indwelling medication pumps, cochlear implants, intracardiac lines, significant intracranial masses or increased intracranial pressure.

Subject must not be pregnant.

  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00001663

United States, Maryland
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Bethesda, Maryland, United States, 20892
Sponsors and Collaborators
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
  More Information

Publications: Identifier: NCT00001663     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 970053
Study First Received: November 3, 1999
Last Updated: March 3, 2008

Keywords provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):
Neurological Disorders
Movement Disorders
Brain Stimulation
Cortical Myoclonus

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Nervous System Diseases
Movement Disorders
Central Nervous System Diseases
Neurologic Manifestations
Signs and Symptoms processed this record on August 23, 2017