Moving toward a generalizable application of central thalamic deep brain stimulation for support of forebrain arousal regulation in the severely injured brain
Deep Brain Stimulation
This review considers the challenges ahead for developing a generalizable strategy for the use of central thalamic deep brain stimulation (CT/DBS) to support arousal regulation mechanisms in the severely injured brain. Historical efforts to apply CT/DBS to patients with severe brain injuries and a proof-of-concept result from a single-subject study are discussed. Circuit and cellular mechanisms underlying the recovery of consciousness are considered for their relevance to the application of CT/DBS, to improve consciousness and cognition in nonprogressive brain injuries. Finally, directions for development, and testing of generalizable criteria for CT/DBS are suggested, which aim to identify neuronal substrates and behavioral profiles that may optimally benefit from support of arousal regulation mechanisms.