Author: Andreas M Burger1, Martina D'Agostini2
1 Biological Psychology Research Group, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.
2 Health Psychology Research Group, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.
Date published: 2020 Oct 1
Other: Volume ID: 23 , Issue ID: 7 , Pages: 1042-1043 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1111/ner.13253. , Word Count: 120
PMID: 32762067 PMCID: PMC7436494 DOI: 10.1111/ner.13253
Due to its noninvasive nature and ease of use, there is cincreasing interest for transcutaneous vagus nerve stimulation (tVNS) as a neuromodulation technique. However, like many emerging fields in medical science, tVNS is hampered by a proliferation of small-scale uninformative and underpowered studies. These studies typically report positive effects that remain unreplicated. Another potential point of concern is the device manufacturers’ involvement in many of those studies, which further enhances the risk of a systematic bias in the literature (1). A recent case report published in Neuromodulation on effects of cervical tVNS on symptoms of COVID-19 (2) seems exemplary of both concerns, as further explained below. We believe it is important and timely to address these issues.