Investigating the effectiveness of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) on the treatment of anxiety disorder in chronic renal dialysis patients

Document Type : Original Article


1 M.Sc. Student of General Psychology, University of Tehran, Tahran, Iran.

2 Ph.D.Deputy Director General of Educational Services. University of Tehran, Iran.


Patients undergoing hemodialysis experience various problems related to the complications of the disease such as physical, economic, social and psychological problems that can be the cause of mental disorders in such patients. The aim of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of tDCS brain electrical stimulation on the treatment of anxiety disorder in chronic renal dialysis patients. This quasi-experimental study was performed on 30 male hemodialysis patients with records in the Kidney Patients Support Association and private centers in Tehran. Patients were selected by convenience sampling and were randomly divided into an experimental (n = 15) and a control (n = 15) groups. The patients in the experimental group underwent the effect of electrical stimulation of tDCS brain with an intensity of 2 mA in 10 sessions of 45 minutes. Data collection tool included Depression, Anxiety and Stress Questionnaire (DASS-21). The data were analyzed using SPSS software (version 21) through analysis of covariance. The results showed that the mean score of anxiety before the intervention in the experimental and control groups was not significantly different (p > .05); however, after the intervention, the difference in the experimental group was significantly smaller than the control group (p < .001). Also, the mean score of anxiety in patients in the experimental group after the intervention was significantly lower than before (p < .001). No significant difference was found in the control group (p > .05). The results revealed that the effectiveness of brain electrical stimulation has an effect on reducing anxiety and stress in hemodialysis patients.