Stress, Anxiety, and Hostility
Written by Dr. James V. Hardt Ph.D.
Stress, Mood and Brain Wave Testing Before and After QEnergySpa, BEFE Footbaths
The Biocybernaut Institute intensive Alpha-1 training uses “state of the art” amplifiers and filters to analyze EEG to provide real-time auditory feedback in conjunction with detailed debriefing and mood analysis. The Biocybernaut Institute offers advanced training for all Brain Waves and combinations as well as shared feedback and coherence training. The above information is a direct extraction from the Biocybernaut Institute webpage.
In 2002 Q the Experience Scientifically Evaluated
Mood and Brain Wave Testing Before and After QEnergySpa, BEFE Footspas/Footbaths
Biocybernaut Institute, Inc.
San Francisco, CA
The reason behind this study was to discover and to begin to understand the range of effects of the QEnergySpa when used as an enhancement tool with human subjects (Ss). Anecdotal reports of beneficial effects and surprising healings abound (See Appendix A) but the purpose of this study formally examined the Q effects on alpha brain waves (EEG), moods, and emotions in human subjects.
The study design was a single-blind crossover design, with 30 paid subjects randomly assigned to have either a Placebo footspa or a Q Treatment footspa for 35 minutes on each of the two days, with one day in between the two sessions. If a given subject was in the Placebo group on the first session, this same subject was in the Treatment group on the second session and vice versa. Batteries of personality tests were given on the first day. On both days, blood pressure was measured and subjective pain reports were collected six times. Computerized mood scale assessments were made three times per day to assess moods Before, During, and After the footspa. Following each days’ first mood scale, the “Before” mood scale, there were three EEG baselines in which EEG activity was recorded from eight cortical locations (O1, O2, C3, C4, T3, T4, F3, F4). The EEG activity at each cortical location was filtered into eight different filter bands, including BroadBand Alpha, which was the EEG data used in the analysis for this study.
At each of the 8 cortical locations, the 8 filter bands (64 total channels of data) were scored by computer, to assess the integrated amplitude scores which were quantified every 15 seconds. The Pre-footspa EEG baseline conditions were Eyes Open (EO, with lights on), Eyes Closed (EC, in the dark), and White Noise (WN, also in the dark). The White Noise, like the Eyes Closed, was done with eyes closed in the dark, but unlike the Eyes Closed condition, the White Noise had an auditory environment that includes both the computer-generated white noise and pseudo-randomly occurring auditory “beep” signals which the Ss were instructed to detect and to count, in a purely mental way (i.e. no counting on fingers was allowed).
Following these three Pre-footspa EEG baselines (EO, EC, and WN), Ss were given a 35-minute footspa using tap water that had been heated to between 105 and 108 degrees Fahrenheit. Immediately after the footspa while their feet were still in the water, the Ss completed the “During” mood-scale to describe how they felt during the footspa. The three EEG baselines were repeated to have Post-footspa EEG measures and were given in the following order: White Noise, Eyes Closed, and Eyes Open. Following these EEG baselines, the Ss completed the final “After” mood scale to describe how they felt right at that moment once the experience was over. Finally, the EEG electrodes were removed, there was a brief discussion and they were free to leave the laboratory.
The second day was procedurally identical except that there was no personality testing conducted.
Ss were randomly assigned to be in either a Placebo or a Q Treatment condition on Day 1. Whatever condition they received on Day 1 was altered to the other condition on Day 2. The randomization resulted in 15 of the 30 Ss having the Q Treatment and the remaining 15 of the 30 Ss having the Placebo condition on Day 1. The Placebo condition was procedurally identical to the Q Treatment condition except that the running (i.e. plugged in and turned on) of the power supply was not connected to the water module containing the rings and tracks that were normally submerged in the water between the feet of the Ss. The Ss were not told that only one of their two days was a Q Treatment whereas the other day was a Placebo footspa. Only the Laboratory Director knew which Ss were receiving which condition on any given day.
The 30 experimental Ss were 16 men and 14 women who volunteered for the research study. They ranged in age from 18 to 77 years. They were randomly assigned to be in either the Placebo or Treatment group for their first session, with a single crossover given in a second session. The Placebo-first Ss had the Treatment in their second session while the Treatment-first Ss had the Placebo condition in their second session. By the random assignment, the Placebo-first Ss were 5 women and 10 men and the Treatment-first Ss were 9 women and 6 men.
All peripheral modality data (heart rate, blood pressure) were collected with an Omron Automatic Inflation Electronic Digital Blood Pressure/Pulse Monitoring System. All EEG data were collected with either a Biocybernaut Institute Mark 8 Hybrid Spectral Analysis system or a Biocybernaut Institute Mark 9 DSP-based Digital Spectral Analysis system, both with 64 channels of A/D converted signals. The Mark 8 had a 12 bit A/D and the Mark 9 had a 16-bit A/D. Both the Mark 8 and Mark 9 systems were calibrated so that a 50 microvolt EEG input produced an integrated amplitude output score of 1,500. Input to the A/D of each system was provided by 8 EEG amplifiers, each with 8 analog or digital filters per EEG channel. The Biocybernaut Institute EEG filters were very sharp (300-400 dB/octave roll-off) and very flat in the passband ( 1 / 3 dB ripple in the passband). The filters provided delta, slow theta, fast theta, slow alpha, broadband alpha, fast alpha, slow beta, and broadband beta signals on each of the 8 EEG channels. Both the Mark 8 and Mark 9 systems were configured to provide measurement on bilateral Occipital, Central, Temporal, and Frontal EEGs (O1 , O2 , C3 , C4 , T3 , T4 , F3 , F4). EEG recording was monopolar to linked ears reference. Mood scales were administered and scored automatically by the Biocybernaut Institute Computerized Mood Scale Assessment Program (BICMSAP), which interacts with the Ss through a keyboard and a color monitor while they are wired for EEG and plugged into the EEG amplifiers and EEG analysis system (BIOFO).
Method (Recruitment Procedure):
Subjects (Ss) were recruited through newspaper ads, inviting people with large English reading vocabularies to participate in a two-day research trial, utilizing the Q ENERGYspa® for which they could receive up to $250.00 per person. Hundreds of people responded. They responded by calling assigned phone numbers, reaching an interviewer. They were interviewed by phone to determine their suitability for the study. Many issues needed to be discussed and clarified in these phone calls, including the person’s age (18 minimum), availability on two days, one day apart and were within a two week period during August 2002. Transportation and location issues were discussed and clarified as well as appropriate dress for the study; women were requested NOT to wear dresses for modesty issues as the technician would be under a table to place and remove the footspa. The table was purposely placed to obscured the Ss’ view of the footspa and the water, to maintain the single-blind study, as there is often discoloration and flocculence of the water after a session with the QEnergySpa. In addition to other screening questions, potential Ss were given a vocabulary test to ensure that they did, in fact, have a large English reading vocabulary. Words for this test were drawn from the computerized mood scales that would be used in the testing. If potential Ss achieved a perfect score on this vocabulary test, they were accepted into the study. If potential Ss did NOT achieve a perfect score on the vocabulary test, they were invited to consider an alternative method of qualifying for the study. They could receive by fax or email the list of words used in the computerized mood scales. They could then study this list and learn the words to perfection. Once they had done this they were invited to call again and take a second vocabulary test. If they achieved a perfect score on this second vocabulary test then they were scheduled for available sessions.
Ss were told that the first day would involve personality testing prior to the other procedures of the study and that these tests would take three or more hours.
Upon arrival at the Biocybernaut Institute Laboratory, Ss were given first the Informed Consent Form (See Appendix B). Once they had read and signed the Informed Consent Form, they were given a folder containing the personality tests along with a brief explanation of how to best fill out the personality tests and in which order to fill them out. The personality tests given included the “granddaddy” of Personality tests; the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) which has 566 True/False questions and is very good at detecting and quantifying degrees of dysfunctionality or psychopathology. In addition, there was also a test to assess the other end of the continuum that runs from dysfunctionality to hyper functionality. This test for the positive end of the functionality spectrum was the operationalization of Maslow’s Self – Actualizing Personality concept which is embodied in the Personality Orientation Inventory (POI). In addition, there was the Psychology of Happiness Inventory (PsychHap) and the Trait forms of the Biocybernaut Institute Emotion Survey (BIES), the Clyde Mood Scale (CMS), and the Biocybernaut Institute Mood Inventory (BIMI).
The Biocybernaut Institute computerized mood scales were given three times each day.
The first administration (“Pre”) was before the footspa with instructions to describe how the person felt “right now”. This was followed by three EEG baselines: Eyes Open (“EO”), Eyes Closed (“EC”), and Eyes Closed with White Noise and beep signals to count (“WN”). The footspa was then taken for 35 minutes. Immediately after the footspa and while their feet were still in the warm water, Ss completed the second set of computerized mood scales (“During”), with instructions to describe how they felt “during the footspa”. The three EEG baselines were then run again: WN, EC, and EO. This was followed by the third and final computerized mood scale (“Post”) which asked Ss to describe how they felt “right now”.
Results and Discussions
Mood Scale Results:
There are 21 moods that are evaluated by the Biocybernaut Institute Computerized Mood Scale Assessment Program (BICMSAP):
- Biocybernaut Institute Emotion Survey (BIES)
- Anxiety – Total (composed of 2 parts:)
- Conscious Anxiety &
- Unconscious Anxiety
- Depression – Total (composed of 2 parts:)
- Conscious Depression &
- Unconscious Depression,
- Hostility – Total (composed of 2 parts:)
- Conscious Hostility &
- Unconscious Hostility
Clyde Mood Scale (CMS)
- Clear Thinking
Biocybernaut Institute Mood Inventory (BIMI)
- Taut & Apprehensive
- Dejected & Depressed
- Befuddled & Confused
- Angry & Hateful
- Strong & Robust
Pre-test Comparisons of Mood Scale Scores between Placebo & Treatments Ss:
The first step of data analysis used t-tests to compare Treatment experimental Ss and Placebo control Ss on their Pre-tests to see how well the two groups of Ss were matched (significance level is p <.05). Comparing all 30 Ss and looking at their Treatment Vs Placebo contrasts, the two groups were very well matched on their pre-tests. There were only 1 of the 21 pre-test moods that reached statistical significance to indicate a difference between the two groups on their pre-tests and by chance, we would expect 1 out of 20 comparisons to be significantly different, at the p <.05 level. The one mood that differed between Treatment and Placebo Ss in the Pre-tests was Unconscious Depression, t =+2.105061, df =29, p <.025. The Ss who were subsequently to have the Q Treatment on the first day were significantly higher in Unconscious Depression than the Ss who were subsequently to have the Placebo condition on their first day. The difference was 1.73 points on an Unconscious Depression scale that ranges from 0 up into the mid-’30s.
“During QEnergySpa, BEFE footbaths” comparisons between Placebo and Treatment Ss:
Both groups completed a 2nd mood scale each day at the end of the 35-minute footspa. This was done while their feet were still in the water, however, the power supply for the QEnergySpa was turned off and the water module removed from the water prior to their completing this 2nd or “During-footspa” mood scale. Mindful of the fact that, by chance, we would expect 1 of the 21 moods to be significant at the p <.05 level (simply by chance), it is instructive that 6 of the 21 moods showed significant differences between the Treatment Group and the Placebo Control group During the footspa. These six moods showing significant differences between Treatment and Placebo Groups were:
During Footspa Contrasts Between
|Mood||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||Mood Score Difference|
|Strong & Robust||+2.45135||29||p<0.025||+3.333|
The range of the Conscious Hostility and the Strong & Robust scales is from 0 up into the mid-30s. The other four scales (Friendly, Energy, Clear Thinking, and Dizzy) have a mean of 50 and a standard deviation of 10. Hence, the large and highly significant increase of Friendly During the Treatment footspa (relative to the Placebo Control footspa) is almost half a standard deviation of the difference between the two groups. The Dizzy scale has a large physical component and it is interesting that there can be increases of both Clear Thinking and Dizzy during the Q Treatment footspa relative to the Placebo Control footspa. The Treatment Ss were less Hostile than the Placebo subjects during the footspa which suggests that the footspa made them less hostile. The footspa also made the Treatment subjects more Friendly, more Energetic, and more Clear Thinking than the Placebo subjects. The Treatment footspa also made subjects more Strong & Robust than did the Placebo footspa. Furthermore, The Treatment Ss also had increases of Dizziness during their footspas, more so than did the Placebo Ss. As noted above, Dizzy has a large physical component, so the Treatment Ss were both more Clear Thinking and more Dizzy than was the Placebo Ss. The Treatment clearly has an effect During the Treatment footspa process which the Placebo footspa does not have.
“After QEnergySpa, BEFE footbaths” comparisons between Placebo and Treatment Ss:
Both groups completed a 3rd mood scale each day at the end of the session to describe how they felt at that time of completion. After the footspa, after Ss had had their feet dried with a towel by the technician after they had put their shoes and socks back on and the footspa container had been removed from the experimental chamber, the Ss were plugged back in for further EEG recording and the three Post-footspa EEG baselines were run (WN, EC, EO). Following these three EEG baselines, there was a 3rd and final Mood Scale for the day, the Post Mood Scale, for which the instructions were to describe how you feel “right now”. The results of these contrasts between Treatment and Placebo Groups after the footspa are given in Table 2.
Post-Footspa Contrasts Between
|Mood||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||Mood Score Difference|
|Dejected & Depressed||+2.661413||29||p<0.01||+2.867|
|Strong & Robust||+2.143075||29||p<0.025||+1.533|
It is clear that the very significant decrease in Anxiety is being driven by the Very Highly significant decrease in Unconscious Anxiety (p <.00005). It would appear that the Q Treatment has powerful Anxiety reducing effects that begin to appear within 20 minutes following the Q Treatment footspa. These 20 minutes, was the time after the footspa at which the final “after” mood scale was administered. When these anxiety-reducing effects begin, they are initially unconscious, since the Conscious Anxiety actually shows a small and non-significant increase of +0.2 points. However, the decrease in Unconscious Anxiety is more than five times larger and is Very Highly significant statistically (p <.00005) and is strong enough to bring Total Anxiety into a very significant decrease of -0.933 points relative to the Placebo Control footspa group. This reduction in Total Anxiety is also very significant (p <.01). The Q Treatment has a very powerful effect in reducing Anxiety.
Also important to an understanding of the effects of the Q Treatment footspa and how these effects develop over time, is a careful noting of the increase of two different measures of Depression in the Treatment group, relative to the placebo control group. Recall that the time of the Post-footspa mood scale is about 20 minutes after the end of the footspa. Unconscious Anxiety and Total Anxiety have significantly decreased in the Treatment Group, relative to the placebo control group, but at this same time, there are increases in Conscious Depression and Dejected & Depressed. Anyone who has worked with the Q the Experience technology has seen a lethargy come over many people in the minutes and hours after their first experience. This significant increase in Conscious Depression and Dejected & Depressed is a quantified scientific description of the after-effects of the Q Treatment, relative to a Placebo Control footspa.
Even more intriguing is the dichotomy between the significant reduction in Energy and the significant increase in Strong & Robust that is seen in the Post Treatment group relative to the Post Placebo group. The Energy reduction is significant (p<.025) and is almost 15% of one standard deviation on the Energy scale of the CMS. The increase of Strong & Robust is also significant (p<.025) and represents a difference of almost 5% of the total scale range of the Strong & Robust scale of the BIMI. This statistically significant difference shows with some subtlety the qualities of the Q Treatment effects relative to placebo controls. Q Treatment Ss can simultaneously feel less Energy, but at the same time can feel more Strong & Robust. The difference may be potential well-being vs. energy, to actualize that potential and of course, these are the effects at the 20-minute point following the footspa. Fortunately, the design of the research study allows us to look at treatment effects beyond the 20-minute mark after the footspa. There is also data available from 2 days after the footspa Treatment. To follow the course of the development of the Q Treatment effects, we next consider the Day 2 effects.
Two-Day Delayed Mood Effects of the Q Treatment:
One of the most interesting types of Mood effects is those that show the effects of the Q Treatment, relative to the Placebo, at the 2-day point after the first treatment. Here we see statistically significant reductions in the Pre-Mood Scales on Day 2 of a wide range of negative emotions including Total Anxiety Unconscious Anxiety, Total Depression, Conscious Depression, Unconscious Depression, Total Hostility, Unconscious Hostility from scales on the BIES. In addition, confirming the statistically significant reduction in BIES measures of Depression, there is also a statistically significant reduction in Dejected & Depressed on the BIMI. The means of deriving these statistical comparisons are as follows; We use one sample t-statistics for the mean. We begin by computing the Mean Change (Day 2 – Day 1) in the Placebo group first for all 21 of the Mood Scale dimensions. This represents whatever changes will occur naturally over the three days that include: Day 1 at the laboratory, One day off, and Day 2 at the laboratory. Using these average change measures from the Placebo group allows us to remove from the Treatment group’s data, any effects that are due solely to the passage of time and familiarity with the laboratory and the laboratory procedures. So in this analysis, the means of the Placebo groups changes (Day 2 – Day 1) on each of the 21 Mood Scale dimensions are calculated and then subtracted from each of the (Day 2 – Day 1) change scores of each member of the Q Treatment group. Again, on each of the 21 Mood Scale dimensions, the Treatment group Ss’ scores are adjusted by subtracting the mean change score of the Placebo group on that Mood Scale dimension. This removes the effects of familiarity with the laboratory and procedures and leaves only the 2-day remnant effect of the Treatment given on Day 1 for each of the 21 Mood Scale Dimensions. Performing this procedure on the Pre-footspa Mood Scale measures, allows us to see effects of the Q Treatment that do not show up until 2 days after the Q Treatment footspa. These results are given in Table 3.
Two-Day Delayed Mood Effects of the
|Mood||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||Mood Score Difference|
|Dejected & Depressed||-4.706633||14||p<0.00025||-3.200|
This is an amazing array of Very Highly Statistically Significant effects, seven of them are stronger than 5 chances out of 1,000 and three of them are stronger than 5 chances out of 10,000 against being due to random chance. These very strong statistical results tell a story of the powerful and beneficial effects of one 35 minute Q Treatment on moods and emotions that are developing and strengthening 2 days after the treatment.
As remarkable as these results are, and even more remarkable set of results is obtained when we do this same type of comparison on the “Post” Mood Scale data. These analyses subtract out the effects of the Placebo-first group from the Treatment-first group’s effects, however this time, when using the “Post” data, we are subtracting out data in which the Placebo-first group has actually had the Q Treatment on the second day. So what we are subtracting out, is the effect of changes from the first to second days (Day 2 – Day 1), where the Placebo-first group data now includes the Q Treatment on Day 2. The impressive arrays of highly significant results that follow in the text and Table 4 attest to the fact that the effects of the Q Treatment after 2 days are even more powerful (and more beneficial) than the effects on the day of the Q Treatment! Table 4 gives the details for the comparisons that involve (Day 2 – Day 1) “Post” footspa Mood Scale Data.
Two-Day Delayed “Post-Q Footspa”
|Mood||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||Mood Score Difference|
|Taut & Apprehensive||+2.494438||14||p<0.025||+1.267|
|Dejected & Depressed||-4.691031||14||p<0.00025||-1.667|
This is an amazing array of Very and even Extremely Highly Statistically Significant effects, one of which is stronger than 5 chances out of 10 million, given that this Extremely Highly Statistically Significant effect involves Conscious Hostility, there is a very strong set of indicators that the QEnergySpa process produces, two days after just one 35 minute treatment, strong and beneficial changes in moods and emotions, that if broadly applied across the population, could well lead to beneficial changes in the way people feel and perhaps in the ways they relate to each other. Imagine the effects in the middle East if all the major players had such significant reductions in Conscious Hostility!
The reductions in Anxiety, Depression and Unhappiness are also powerful and potentially beneficial to almost every area of human endeavor. These very strong statistical results tell a story of the powerful and beneficial effects of one 35 minute Q Treatment on moods and emotions which effects are developing and strengthening 2 days after the treatment. Combined with these results, there is also a significant increase in Dizzy and Taut & Apprehensive. With such powerful and beneficial changes set loose in the person’s psyche, there could well be a sense of Dizziness in the changes and the natural tendency to resist rapid change may be the explanation for the significant increase in Taut & Apprehensive.
Two of the 30 Ss experienced panic attacks on their second day at the laboratory. Both Ss were female and both had been in the Q Treatment group on Day 1, so they could possibly have been experiencing some of the mood and emotional changes that have been documented above. This progressively developing mood and emotional changes seem to have involved the emergence into consciousness of memories that had been repressed. Both of the panic attacks occurred in the experimental chambers early on during the second session. In both instances the women had their EEG electrode headboxes plugged in, and they were either ready for EEG recording to begin or they were already having EEG baseline recordings. The first case involved a woman who had a full-blown panic attack with heart-pounding and racing, hyperventilation, sweating, and chills. In appearance, this woman was thin, nervous, and tense. During that day’s (Day 2) electrode application process, she had spoken of bad memories that were beginning to surface. She said she thought she had buried these memories and mentioned that the process of thinking about how to answer some of the questions on the personality tests had caused her to think about unpleasant past events. At one point while electrodes were being attached to another of the research Ss, this woman suddenly asked if there was anything in the electrode wires that could explode. The Research Director immediately explained that “No, there is nothing in the electrode wires that could explode”. And he went on to explain that inside the colorful plastic coatings of the electrode wires was a woven sheath of very fine, supple, hair-like wires that were designed to both conducts the very tiny brain waves easily and also to be flexible and resistant to being broken when bent or moved. The Research Director then went on to ask the woman directly, “Is there was something inside of YOU that could explode”? At this point, the woman shifted nervously in her chair and spoke of her belief that some things should not be thought about. She mentioned wanting to keep a lid on her thoughts and feelings.
No further comments were made on this topic and when all three of the Ss were ready to go to their experimental chambers, they first took a bathroom break and then went into their respective chambers to fill out the first set of Mood Scales for the day. After the Mood Scales were completed, before the EEG recording had started, with the lights on and the door still open, this first woman had her panic attack. The technician responded to her call on the intercom and notified the Research Director who went into the woman’s chamber and counseled her to calm her down. The Research Director offered to sit with her in the chamber for the two EEG baselines that are done with eyes closed, in the dark, and with the door closed (EC and WN), but after a little counseling and reassurance, the woman said that she would be able to handle going through the procedures in the normal manner by herself. The rest of the session was uneventful and there were no further panic attacks.
The second case involved a woman who was also on her second session who had her panic attack during the day’s first WN baseline. Her panic attack had all the same symptoms but was not as severe and she was able to control herself by partially getting up out of her chair (without dislodging her electrode wires) and opening the chamber door so that light could come in. With this modification, she was able to continue and did not even call for help, though she did report the panic attack at the end of the WN baseline, first to the technician and then to the Research Director. She described how some aspect of her thought processes during the WN baseline had evoked some prior memories that then triggered the panic attack.
Again both of these panic attacks were women on their second day at the laboratory, so there would not have been any reason to fear the laboratory or the procedures, all of which would have been familiar at that time. A more likely reason for the panic attacks would be that the women had been given the Q Treatment on their first day and it was now two days later and the Q Treatment could have been causing repressed memories to surface. This suggests that there may well be some personality types who should only use the Q Treatment under qualified supervision so that the emergence into consciousness of repressed thoughts and emotions will be the subject of suitable counseling. In this way, these vulnerable people will be able to successfully process their way through these thoughts and emotions to achieve a better self-understanding and an improved degree of mental, emotional stability, and harmony.
We could also note, parenthetically, that since this type of processing is a significant component of the Biocybernaut Institute Neurofeedback training programs, that, it would be a good match to combine the Q The Experience process with the Biocybernaut Institute Neurofeedback training programs. And it is now the intention of Biocybernaut Institute, based on the positive and beneficial findings from this research study, to make Q The Experience process a part of all Biocybernaut Institute Neurofeedback training programs. The time required each day for electrode application is about the same time (35 minutes) as is required for the Q Treatment with a footspa, so there is an easy and natural blending of the two processes readily available. The Biocybernaut training is on 7 consecutive days so the Q Treatment footspa could be given on days 1, 3, 5, and 7.
EEG Alpha Results:
One of the compelling reasons to use EEG measures in evaluating products is that the EEG measures are very sensitive to individual variations inexperience. However, this very sensitivity leads to one of the primary challenges of using EEG measures and that is the large individual differences that contribute to large error variance terms that are associated with any comparisons across Ss. These large error variances make it less likely that the comparisons will achieve statistical significance.
One of the challenges of doing EEG research is that of discovering, crafting, and applying statistical analysis methods that reduce the large contribution of individual differences in the magnitude and the standard deviations of EEG scores to the error variance terms. Analysis methods that are performed largely within individuals and thus are relatively independent of the large magnitude variations between individuals can be very helpful in reducing the error variance terms and thus in achieving statistical significance and the consequent understandings of the meaning in the EEG data.
The first analysis typically performed (which does not reduce the large contribution of individual differences to the error variance) is a test to see if there is a Main Effect of the Treatment across all the Conditions which here is across the 2 days. Recall that there were 3 EEG baseline conditions before the Treatment footspa or the Placebo footspa EO, EC, WN) and the same 3 EEG baseline conditions, in reverse order, were given after the Treatment or Placebo footspa (WN, EC, EO). Within each of these EEG conditions, we studied the Minimum (Min), Maximum (Max), and Average (Avg) integrated amplitude scores that were calculated over 15-second sub-epoch periods. This was done for Broad Band EEG Alpha activity at 8 different cortical sites (O1, O2, C3, C4, T3, T4, F3, F4) There are also 3 EEG baselines after the footspa. The Average (Avg) score was calculated over the entire set of 15-second sub-epochs in the EO, EC, and WN conditions. Both EO and EC had 16 of the 15-second sub-epochs and were thus 4 minutes long and the WN had 32 of the 15-second sub-epochs and was thus 8 minutes long. The Avg scores were calculated over the entire baseline of either 4 minutes (EO and EC) or 8 minutes (WN).
This set of analyses makes for 72 Pre-measures and 72 Post-measures: (3 EEG conditions [EO, EC, WN] times 3 statistical measures [Min, Max, Avg] times 8 cortical sites [O1, O2, C3, C4, T3, T4, F3, F4] and 3x3x8 = 72.
Pre-test EEG Alpha Comparisons between Placebo and Treatment Ss:
Using t-tests for two groups, the 72 EEG Pre-measures were studied to discover if there were any differences between the Treatment and Placebo groups. None of the 72 EEG Pre-measures were significant between the Treatment and Placebo groups. This could mean either that the two groups, which had been derived through random assignment, were well matched or that there were differences between the two groups that were masked by the large error variances associated with EEG measures.
Post-test EEG Alpha Comparisons between Placebo and Treatment Ss:
Again using t-tests for two groups, the 72 EEG Post-measures were studied to discover if there were any differences between the Treatment and Placebo groups. None of the 72 EEG Post-measures were significant between the Treatment and Placebo groups. This Non-Significant result is more surprising than the lack of significant results in the EEG Pre-measures. This means that through the lens of Broad Band EEG Alpha, the 15 Treatment Ss and the 15 Placebo Ss did not differ AFTER the footspas. This surprising result suggests the existence of some very large error variances which are not untypical in EEG data.
To look further into this unexpected result, the next step was to separate days and look at the Treatment vs. Placebo difference within each day separately. All of the Pre- measures on Day 1 have the benefit of being before any Treatment or Placebo intervention so we would expect, if the Treatment and Placebo groups were well matched on their EEG measures by the randomization procedure, that there would also be no significant difference between the Treatment and Placebo groups before (Pre) the Day 1 footspa. Recall this was the situation when data were aggregated across both days.
However, when looking only within Day 1 EEG Pre-measures there were many significant differences between the Treatment and Placebo groups. Four of the 18 Frontal contrasts were significant, as were 12 of the 18 Temporal contrasts and 6 of the 18 Central contrasts, using 1 tailed t-test. If we restrict the analysis to 2-tailed t-tests, then there were fewer significant contrasts and all of those involved the T4 electrode site. Curiously, all of the significant contrasts showed that on Day 1 before anyone had any kind of treatment, the Placebo Ss had higher T4 alpha than did the Ss who were going to (later that day) receive the Q Treatment. All of the 1-tailed contrasts that are not tabled below also showed the Placebo Group had higher alpha, to begin with at all sites except the Occipital sites. See Table 5.
|Day 1 Pre-Treatment EEG Contrasts between Treatment and Placebo Groups|
|EEG Measure||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||EEG Difference* Placebo vs. Treatment|
|Pre EO Average T4||-2.17202||28||p<0.05||650.6 vs. 483.1|
|Pre EC Minimum T4||-2.65155||28||p<0.025||639.4 vs. 396.7|
|Pre EC Average T4||-2.351||28||p<0.05||849.2 vs. 587.3|
|Pre WN Average T4||-2.45958||28||p<0.05||869.3 vs. 612.7|
Note: All tabled effects are 2-tailed significance levels.
* EEG scores are on a scale of integrated amplitude where a steady 50 µvolts = 1,500 points, and thus a sustained 1 µvolt = 30 points.
Interestingly none of the 18 Occipital contrasts were significant at either the 1-tailed or the 2-tailed statistical levels. This means that the Occipital EEG alpha scores were much better matched between the groups than the three other pairs of sites (Central, Temporal, and Frontal). This fact should make it easier to detect statistical significance at Occipital sites if the Q Treatment produces EEG changes there. This says that the Treatment and Placebo groups were well matched by the randomization procedures ONLY on the Occipital brain wave measures and they were NOT well matched on the Central, Temporal and Frontal measures. This is one of the unfortunate and all-too-common consequences of a small sample size: only 15 Ss in each of the two groups. If we had had larger groups, say 30-60 Ss in each group, the randomization would be much more likely to produce well-matched Treatment and Placebo groups.
Also interesting is that 15 of the 22 EEG mismatches were on the Right hemisphere. It would be instructive to see what personality types contributed to this mismatch between the Treatment and Placebo groups and that data is available in the Biocybernaut Institute data archive for all 30 Ss and is awaiting both scoring and analysis in future studies.
The Treatment and Placebo groups on Day 1 also differed after treatment and again the differences were exclusively on Central, Temporal and Frontal sites. This emphasizes the importance of removing the individual differences in the Pre-EEG measures from any and all assessments of the Post EEG measures.
One useful way to cut through the statistical noise caused by large error variances in EEG scores is to look at data within Ss rather than between or across Ss.
Change scores of individual Ss are a good start in this direction, although large individual differences in the magnitude of change scores will still exist. If one person’s alpha increases by doubling from 1,000 to 2,000, the change is 1,000, and if another person’s alpha increases by doubling from 200 to 400 the change is 200. They have both doubled, but there is a five-fold difference in the change scores which inflates the variance even in paired t-tests.
Paired t-tests using the pairing of each S’s Pre and Post EEG scores for Day 1, showed interesting differences between the Treatment and Placebo groups. Contrasts of Eyes Closed (EC) Alpha scores showed no significant Occipital Alpha contrasts in the Placebo Group. However, the Treatment Group did show significant increases, Pre to Post, in the Maximum Occipital scores (O1 Max and O2 Max). The Average O2 (O2 Avg) also increased significantly from before to after the Treatment (Post–Pre > 0). These results are given in Table 6 below.
|Day 1 Paired-t Contrasts Between Pre & Post EC EEG Scores, Separately in Both Groups|
|EEG Measure||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||EEG Score Difference|
|~~~No Significant Effects~~~|
|EEG Measure||t-score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||EEG Score Difference|
Note: All tabled effects are 2-tailed significance levels.
What we did next was to apply one of the same analysis methods as was used to good effect in the mood scale analysis where we calculated the average change in the Placebo group on EACH mood scale measure and then subtracted that number from each Treatment S’s score and then we did a single t-test for the mean. This was a VERY powerful analysis method for mood scale data. To apply this same method to the EEG data we calculated the average change in the Placebo group on EACH EEG measure and then subtracted that number from each Treatment S’s score on that EEG measure, and then we did a single t-test for the mean. With the assumption that the effects of the Q Treatment would make Ss more alert in the eyes open condition, the EO (eyes open) alpha scores would be expected to be lower in the Treatment group. Beneficial effects of the Q Treatment would also be expected to yield higher alpha scores in the EC condition (eyes closed). The analysis used the one-sample t-statistic for the mean. On each of the EEG measures, we computed the Mean Change (Day 2 – Day 1) in the Placebo-first group and subtracted this value from the individual scores of each Ss in the Treatment first group on each of their corresponding EEG scores, knowing that this removes effects of familiarity with the laboratory and procedures and leaves only the 2-day remnant effect of the Treatment given on Day 1, for each of the EEG measures.
The results of this analysis for the Eyes Open (EO) condition are given in Table 7 and the results for the Eyes Closed (EC) condition are given in Table 8.
Eyes Open EEG Data
|(Day 2 – Day 1) One Sample t-Tests of the Mean for Treatment Ss with Average Changes (Day 2 – Day 1) for Placebo Ss Subtracted Out to Leave Remnant Effect only of the Treatment|
|EEG Measure||t-Score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level|
All of the above data are consistent in showing a pattern of greater alertness in the Eyes Open Treatment Ss who have lower Eyes Open EEG scores than the Placebo Ss. All but one of the 8 cortical sites show this effect (O2 does not) and the effects are often Extremely Highly Statistically Significant.
|(Day 2 – Day 1) One-Sample t-Tests of the Mean for Treatment Ss with Average Changes (Day 2 – Day 1) for Placebo Ss Subtracted Out to Leave Remnant Effects Only of the Treatment|
|EEG Measure||t-Score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level|
The Eyes Closed data show higher EEG alpha scores in the Q Treatment Ss at 7 of the 8 cortical sites. T3 is the only site that does not show this effect of the Q Treatment. Interestingly the C3 site shows a paradoxical effect in that the Q Treatment produces larger Minimum scores in Treatment Ss for C3 alpha (t=3.602164, df = 14, p<.0025) but then there is, paradoxically, a significantly LOWER Maximum score for C3 alpha in the Treatment Ss ( t = -2.2509, df = 14, p < .025). It is well within reason that this paradoxical result could have occurred by chance since 1 out of 20 comparisons could be significant at the p<.05 level by random chance and 1 out of 40 comparisons could be significant at the p<.025 level by random chance and we did here 72 comparisons and got one paradoxical result at the p<.025 level. If the paradoxical result is real and reproducible it could be of some importance because broadband alpha at the C 3 site is strongly and negatively correlated with Paranoia. A different sign for changes in the Minimum and Maximum measures of C alpha may be important for future work relating the Q Treatment to interventions with Paranoia. Different signs for changes in the Minimum and Maximum measures of C3 alpha would be more likely to be real (rather than random) if there were differences in the variance or standard deviation measures of C3 alpha. And, in fact, we do have a Very Highly Statistically Significant Difference in the Standard Deviation measures of C3 alpha (t= -4.90134, df = 14, p<.00025) where the Q Treatment Ss have significantly smaller Standard Deviations of their C3 alpha change scores: (Day 2 – Day 1) changes.
Percent Change Scores:
The purest way to look at the EEG changes associated with the Q Treatment may be to look at the Day 1 Percent Change scores [from Before to After the footspa] for the comparison between Treatment and Placebo groups. By using the Percent Change scores, we remove more of the effects of the pre-treatment differences between the Treatment and the Placebo groups and we also remove more of the effects of the individual differences between Ss within each of the two groups. We do this exclusively with the Day 1 score because, by Day 2, both groups have had the Q Treatment. However, in the Day 1 comparisons, only the Treatment Group has had the benefit of the Q Treatment. We would assume that there would be larger alpha increases in the Treatment group for the eyes closed [EC] resting baseline condition since alpha is more prevalent in eyes-closed conditions and any effects of the Q Treatment would be most likely to be seen in an eyes-closed condition without any task requirements. Therefore we use the 1-tailed t-test for positive t’s that indicate larger alpha percent change scores for the Q Treatment group relative to the control group. Table 9 shows these results.
|Day 1 (Pre-to-Post) Percent Changes In The Treatment vs. Placebo Group|
|EEG Measure||t-Score||Degrees of Freedom||Probability Level||EEG Score Difference*|
Percent Change in (EC2-EC1) vs. Placebo Group
|+28.90 vs. +8.02|
|+17.61 vs. +2.38|
|+27.47 vs. +8.53|
|+27.90 vs. +1.67|
|+12.15 vs. -6.14|
|+21.29 vs. -7.46|
|+18.38 vs. +8.53|
* Note. EEG scores are on a scale of integrated amplitude where a steady 50 µvolts = 1,500 points, and thus a sustained 1 µvolt = 30 points. This way we can see that the largest changes were seen in the Treatment Group (from before to after the Q Treatment) are nearly 1 µvolt. The differences between the changes in the Treatment and Placebo groups also approach 1 µvolt, as in the contrast between Treatment and Placebo for the O 2 Average scores ( +27.90 vs. +1.67 => Difference = 26.23 = 0.87 µvolt) and the T 4 Minimum scores (+21.29 vs. -7.46 => Difference = 28.75 = 0.96 µvolt).
Both of the Occipital sites provide statistically significant differences between the Q Treatment group and the Placebo Control group. Both the 15-second Maximum scores and the overall Average scores at the Occipital sites show the effects of the Q Treatment in increasing these alpha EEG scores. Two other cortical sites (both in the right hemisphere) also show increased alpha as a result of the Q Treatment. Right Temporal, T4, shows higher alpha Minima and Averages in the Percent Changes of alpha scores for the Treatment Group compared to the Placebo Control Group. In addition Right Central, C4 shows higher alpha Minima in the Q Treatment Group than in the Placebo Control Group.
Occipital alpha increases are known from previous research studies to be related to reductions in Anxiety (Hardt, J.V. and Kamiya, J. Anxiety change through EEG alpha feedback: Seen only in high anxiety subjects. Science, Vol. 201, pp. 79-81, 1978) and also to reductions of Anger, Hostility, and Depression (Hardt, J.V., Prescriptive Brain Maps of Human Mood States, Proceedings of the Society for the Study of Neuronal Regulation, 2nd Annual Meeting, Las Vegas, NV, May 1-4, Vol. 2, p. 15, 1994; Hardt, J.V. Accelerating Personality Change with Predictive Brain Mapping and Training, Proceedings, Future Health’s Key West Conference, EEG ‘ 95, Key West, FL, Feb. 2-7, 1995). Thus these bilateral Occipital, Right Central, and Right Temporal Alpha increases are entirely consistent with the findings described above that have shown beneficial changes in Moods and emotions as a result of the Q Treatment, mood changes that involve reductions of Anxiety, Hostility, and Depression.
In summary, the Q Treatment significantly increases Eyes Closed EEG Alpha activity at selected cortical sites, especially Occipital sites, and the Q Treatment also reduces negative emotions including Anxiety, Depression, Unhappiness, and Hostility. These beneficial changes in moods become stronger over time out to the limit of time measured in this study, which was 2 days after the Q Treatment. There are also some beneficial short term effects of the Q Treatment, such as increases in Friendly, Clear Thinking, Energy, and Strong & Robust. These are seen during the Q Treatment to be higher in the Treatment Ss than in the Placebo Ss, but these beneficial changes do not persist after the footspa at either the 20 minute Post or the 2-day Post assessment periods. Indeed the Energy scores of the Q Treatment Ss are lower than Placebo Ss at the 20-minute post-assessment period. It may well be that additional treatment, beyond the one Q Treatment given would lead to longer-term increases of the positive moods such as Friendly, Clear Thinking, Energy and Strong & Robust. Careful attention has been given to identifying the Ss in this research study, so they could be re-contacted and further, more long-term studies could be conducted with these same Ss, on whom so much data has already been carefully collected.
The long-term (2-days post-treatment) reductions in negative moods including Anxiety, Depression, Unhappiness, and Hostility are firmly established by the results of this study and the benefits of such improvements in moods and emotions are immediately apparent. Further studies could begin to assess whether there are also long term improvements in positive emotions that would develop with a longer program of Q Treatments.
Three interesting results occurred with the provision of Q-treatments outside the scope of this study. In the first instance a man, GM, in his mid-40s had given a high-powered white shirt business presentation to several people, one of whom had a Q-The Experience device. After the presentation, GM was invited up to a hotel room for a footbath. He took off his suit coat and shoes and socks and began the footbath. At the 20 minute point he blurted out, “I feel like I’ve lost all my testosterone!” Then it was explained to him that success energy and aggressive masculine energy are not the same. It was explained to him that the stress could be taken out of his energy and he would be both more effective and less drained of energy. At the conclusion of his footbath, he put on his socks and shoes and bid everyone good night, and left. The next day he called with some surprising news. Unbeknownst to everyone except GM, he had a substantial hemispherical lump on his back, that was perhaps 3/4 inch in diameter. He had consulted with his Doctor about this lump and was told it was an infection. The Doctor offered to surgically open the infected lump so the infection could be drained and it could heal. GM had declined the surgical procedure, the lancing of his infected lump. However on the morning following his Q-Treatment he was first alarmed, then surprised, and then delighted that the lump had opened by itself and the infection had drained out during the night, and it was well on its way to healing. GM attributed this surprising result to his one Q -Treatment footbath.
In the second instance, a woman (SH) in her mid 50’s had severely injured her back while lifting and playing with her grandson. Her back had been previously injured in an auto accident and the play with the grandson had aggravated this old injury. SH was in severe pain for over a week and had uncharacteristic outbursts of anger caused by her constant pain and triggered by events that she could normally handle with ease. She came for one 35 minute session of the footspa treatment and she was 100% pain-free on the following day. She was so completely free of the pain that she played actively with her grandson again, and re-injured her back while lifting and playing with her grandson. However, the injury was not as severe as previously and began to heal on its own. SH attributed her remarkable and rapid recovery to her one Q Treatment footspa.
In the third instance, a man in his mid-70s (RO) had participated in the formal study described above. For several reasons, RO was able to have 5-6 additional footspa treatments over the next 2 months. RO had been quite concerned about his systolic blood pressure, which was running in the mid-150s. Following the 5-6 additional treatments, his systolic blood pressure had dropped dramatically and was now in the high 120s. He was very pleased with this result and he attributed this wonderful result to his QEnergySpa, BEFE footspa treatments.
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