Non-invasive brain stimulation in human stroke survivors
The use of electromagnetic currents toward understanding and curing human disease has long been of interest. In the 1980s, a dramatic increase in our understanding of brain function, along with parallel improvements in non-invasive brain stimulation (NIBS) technologies, subsequently caused rapid expansion of the field. Intraoperative monitoring techniques that incorporated single pulse stimulation were developed concurrently for the purpose of measuring corticospinal integrity (Merton & Morton, 1980a, 1980b); however, with the introduction of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), the use of NIBS decisively exploded, opening a new window into the exploration and modulation of the brain (Barker and Jalinous, Lancet, 1(8437):1106–1107, 1985). Single pulse TMS, used initially to study inter-cortical physiology of the intact corticospinal tract, was thereafter investigated toward the rehabilitation of neurological and psychiatric conditions.