Boston-Harvard Burn Injury Study:
Effect of tDCS on chronic pain and itch following burn injury.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Felipe Fregni

Quick info

    • When:
    • Ongoing
    • Time Commitment:
    • 1-2 hour sessions for:
    • -Single Visit
    • -14 visits over 3 months
    • -23 visits over one year
    • Study Type:
    • In-person
    • Neuromodulation center near Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Charlestown, MA
    • Population:
    • Men and women who are over the age of 18 and have moderate to severe chronic pain or itch due to burn injury are eligible.

This study is investigating a non-invasive method of brain stimulation (Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation or tDCS) for the relief of chronic pain and itch due to a previous burn injury. Men and women who are over the age of 18 and have moderate to severe chronic pain or itch due to burn injury are eligible

Participants can complete either 1 single visit, 14 visits over 3 months, or 23 visits over one year. Each visit takes 1-2 hours and will include 20 minutes of tDCS stimulation, an EEG and/or questionnaires. The participant will receive either active stimulation or sham stimulation (placebo). Participants who receive sham stimulation during their initial participation are eligible to re-enroll in open-label treatment and receive 10 sessions of active stimulation. Click on the video below to learn more about tDCS.

Study visits are being conducted at the Neuromodulation Center near Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Charlestown, MA. Travel reimbursement is available and eligible participants will receive up to $500 depending on the number of completed visits.

For more information, click on the link below or contact Emily Ohrtman at 617-952-6311 or at

transcranial Direct Current Stimulation

Watch this demonstration of transcranial Direct Current Stimulation- tDCS, a non-invasive method of brain stimulation being investigated by the Boston-Harvard Burn Injury Model System in collaboration with the Spaulding Neuromodulation Lab for the relief of chronic pain and itch due to a previous burn injury.

LIBRE is an innovative system for measuring a return to life
after burn injury.

Attempting to return to everyday life after a burn injury can be difficult, stressful, and emotionally challenging. While traditional rehabilitation strategies for burn survivors focus on physical recovery, LIBRE focuses on the impact burn injuries have on social life.

LIBRE is a computer-based questionnaire currently under development. Once completed, the tool will be used by burn survivors and clinicians to track an individual’s burn recovery, improve rehabilitation efforts and identify areas where additional support is needed.

What is unique about this questionnaire is that it will be:

  • specific to people with burn injuries
  • tailored to the individual
  • focused on the social impact of burn injury

The LIBRE Profile: Assessing Burn Survivors' Social Participation

The video describes why and how we created the LIBRE Profile, as well as how it will be used once it’s ready to be distributed to the burn community. Watch this short video, we hope you enjoy it!

Feel free to contact the LIBRE Profile
at 1-844-255-9987 or

Burn Model Systems National Longitudinal Database

BHBIMS is dedicated to contributing to the Burn Model Systems (BMS) National Database, a prospective, longitudinal, multicenter research study that examines functional and psychosocial outcomes following burns. The BMS National Database consists of data collected from almost 4,000 adults and over 2,000 children with moderate to severe burn injury. In collaboration with the three other NIDILRR-funded BMS sites, we aim to conduct rigorous long-term research that:

  1. Leads to improved care and outcomes of individuals with severe burn injuries.
  2. Contributes to evidence-based rehabilitation interventions and clinical practice guidelines for persons with severe burns.
  3. Studies the longitudinal course and secondary effects of severe burn injuries.
  4. Identifies and evaluates trends over time.
  5. Establishes expected rehabilitation outcomes for burn survivors.
  6. Facilitates other projects, including clinical trials and population-based studies.
  • The other three BMS centers are:
  • Northwest Regional Burn Model System in Seattle, Washington;
  • Pediatric Burn Injury Rehabilitation Model System in Galveston, Texas; and
  • North Texas Burn Rehabilitation Model System in Dallas, Texas.

We welcome the use of the BMS National Database by external researchers who share our goal of improving the lives of burn survivors. Please click here.

Visit the Burn Model System Data and Statistical Center website for more information.

To learn more information on 2017 BMS National Database Facts and Figures:

Select Years of Publication







Burn Outcome

BOQ’s are patient and family reported outcome metrics for children of all ages. The questionnaires are broken up into several categories:

  • ages 0-4
  • ages 5-18
  • ages 18-30 (young adult BOQ)
Learn More

Heterotopic Ossification Risk Scoring System

Heterotopic Ossification is a rare but severely debilitating complication of burn injuries. We developed a risk scoring system that can be used to predict heterotopic ossification at the time of admission to the hospital.

Learn More

Guidelines for Burn Care
Under Austere Conditions

A series of articles was authored by members of the American Burn Association dedicated to disaster preparedness. These articles specifically address how to carry on effective burn care in a post apocalyptic environment.

Learn More