Low Energy Neurofeedback System (LENS)

Low Energy Neurofeedback System (LENS) is an EEG biofeedback system certified by the United States FDA as a 510K exempt biofeedback device approved for relaxation and self-regulation.

My fee for a 30-minute LENS session is $85.

LENS uses the dominant brain wave as the basis for the feedback frequency that is fed back to the person who has sensors applied in the standard manner.  The feedback frequency, through a patented formula, is resonant with the brain’s dominant frequency at any particular sensor site. LENS provides feedback from the video monitor, as does traditional neurofeedback. While it is recognized clinically that LENS treatment success is derived from brief treatment sessions, the mechanism allowing this brevity is not fully understood.

It is unique in the field of neurofeedback in that instead of only displaying information on a computer screen to assist the patient in conditioning healthier brainwave patterns; LENS uses tiny electromagnetic signals as a carrier wave for the feedback to assist in reorganizing brainwave activity.  LENS works by continuously monitoring EEG activity and then uses these readings to determine the frequency of very small electromagnetic fields that are “offset” several cycles per second (hertz) faster than the patient’s dominant brainwave.  This feedback stimulus input is then delivered down electrode wires at generally seven or fewer electrode sites in the course of a treatment session, for only one second per site.  This input is much weaker than what the brain receives from holding a cell phone to one’s ear.

LENS uses standard computer-driven microprocessor-based EEG units without altering the EEG equipment in any way. All microprocessor-based EEGs produce a range of electromagnetic fields that coexist with the feedback that is produced within these neurofeedback systems.

How can non-perceivable feedback to the brain that is of such minimal magnitude still be influential?  While the mechanism of how this happens remains to be determined, it is clear from both the documented effects of these feedback signals on the amplitudes and variability of brainwaves, that (1) this feedback is being processed by the brain, and (2) that the impact of these signals, when used correctly, can improve people’s functioning in their own experience and the experience of others who observe them.

Improved functioning has been observed for those patients receiving LENS treatment who had plateau in their recovery from motor paralysis and CNS-mediated cognitive and mood impairment after mechanical and psychological trauma.  Reported improvements have persisted since data collection was begun in 1994 (and even earlier with antecedent systems).

Improvement has been reported in most of subject who have been treated with LENS.  When the subjects for this research and treatment have fallen within the areas that are known to be particularly treatable, such as mild traumatic brain injury, fibromyalgia, and explosive autism, the success rate has reached over 80%.  The more the patient’s history has been complicated by lifelong problems preceded by an inter-generational history of problems in parents and grandparents, and when the patient’s problems have been numerous and complex, it is much more complicated to judge the efficacy of this approach; thus, the “success rate” may drop precipitously.

Side effects from the use of LENS have been similar to those that result from any change in situation (biofeedback, meditation, moving a household, body work), i.e., disruptive upon over stimulation, but transient and so far not involving any organ system damage or dysfunction.  The three most common side effects when there has been over stimulation have been fatigue, anxiety or hyperactivity, and no improvement in clinical symptoms.  All of these situations resolved themselves, usually within a few hours or days, by temporary withdrawal from treatment and decreased exposure to feedback.

It seems wise to look at LENS as one potential tool that may do some jobs very well.  It also seems wise to think about using LENS in a treatment context of other modalities, rather than as a single magical solution that might solve all problems.  

None of the forms of EEG biofeedback appear to have ever cured a progressive condition such as Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, Parkinsonism, or dementia.  However, they probably have increased functioning and quality of life for many people in the earliest stages of any of these diseases, perhaps for at least several years, and when applied properly. 

Each form of EEG biofeedback seems to complement and enhance the effects of all of the others, as well as other forms of therapy.

While each form of EEG biofeedback may appear scientific, the application of each is probably more of a physiologically-based art than science at this stage of the game.  Even so, all of the forms of EEG biofeedback seem to offer provocative and interesting hope for many who have been declared to be at the end of their options for improvement.

The distinct advantages of LENS compared with traditional neurofeedback are:

1.  LENS sessions last from a few seconds to a few minutes in duration. The patient is not required to sit for long periods of time with this feedback system.

2.  Because the feedback is carried to the patient through the sensor wires, the patient does not need to concentrate as in traditional neurofeedback. This is critical for patients who are seeking treatment because of their inability or impaired ability to concentrate and focus. LENS can be used successfully with very young children and infants, Autistic Spectrum patients and animals.

3.  LENS works well for patients with issues that underlie apparently simple academic problems such as anxiety and irritability.

4.  LENS works equally well whether the patient’s problems came on suddenly or whether other family members have had the same problems when they were younger (genetic component).

5.  Through evaluations developed specifically for the LENS, prospective patients can be chosen who have the greatest chance of responding well to LENS, resulting in an 80-85% success rate.

6.  Through ongoing evaluation, the patient’s treatment plan can be individualized for the temperament of the particular patient thus increasing the speed at which the patient’s symptoms resolve.

7.  LENS treatments usually require 2/3 the number of sessions as traditional neurofeedback.

8.  Because LENS sessions are so brief, it is often more tolerable for those with difficulty sitting still and/or concentrating.

9.  LENS is relatively immune from movement artifact, decreasing frustration and connect time for the patient.

10. Neither home practice nor concentration is required, increasing the success rate for patients.

Above information adapted from Ochs Labs and Len Ochs.


I have been trained by Laurel Parnell and adhere to the Parnell Method of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR is an evidence-based treatment to help people who have been affected by either single-incident or complex trauma.

My fee for a 90-minute EMDR session is $260.

Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of psychotherapy developed by Francine Shapiro which uses eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation to assist clients in processing distressing memories and beliefs. It is commonly used for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The theory behind the treatment assumes that when a traumatic or distressing experience occurs, it may overwhelm normal coping mechanisms, with the memory and associated stimuli being inadequately processed and stored in an isolated memory network. (Wikipedia)

Sand tray Therapy.

I use sand tray therapy with adolescents and adults in addition to traditional talk therapy. Sand tray therapy allows the individual to use a different part of the brain, as with music or art therapy.

For further information, please call or e-mail me at 503.980.5322 or johnnie@capstonecounseling.net.

   Copyright © Johnnie C. Burt, Capstone Counseling LLC, 2005-2019
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