Event on 07 September, 2019

Seminar: Andrea Parker, Occupational Therapist

Topic: What happens in vagus: an exploration of vagus nerve stimulation as a potential therapy for ME/CFS and beyond.

Here is the eagerly awaited presentation by Andrea Parker, Occupational Therapist, who spoke on transcutaneous Vagus Nerve Stimulation (tVNS) as a possible therapy for ME/CFS at our recent AGM/Seminar, 7th September 2019, Unley Community Centre.

It is wonderful to have such talent and commitment within our membership and we thank Andrea for her contribution to our community.

This article by Cort Johnson, on Health Rising, expands on Andrea's work.

Below are links to both the full-length and shortened versions of her talk, plus a more recent video on The "How to" of tVNS.

Andrea's Talk

Full-length video - 56 minutes

If you would like to go to a specific part of the presentation, you can click on the time links that are listed below the video.


02:00 - What is ME/CFS and my journey with the illness

05:48 - A Systems Theory approach

06:58 - The Cell Danger Response Hypothesis

08:00 - (A brief detour...a Lego model of ATP production)

10:17 - Cell Danger Response continued

12:52 - What is the autonomic nervous system and how does it respond to threat?

15:03 - The Polyvagal Theory

17:32 - Clinical implications of a low functioning Green Zone

21:11 - Vagus Nerve Stimulation may activate the Green Zone

23:32 - What is Vagus Nerve Stimulation?

28:53 - Time to test this hypothesis...on myself!

34:07 - The Parasym Data Collection Project

39:30 - Implications for research and therapy: What has helped me?

46:46 - Implications for research and therapy: ME/CFS and beyond

50:11 - Measuring dysfunction and recovery

53:07 - Conclusion

54:38 - A message of hope

56:02 - References

Summary video - 15 minutes

The "How To" of Transcutaneous Vagus Nerve Stimulation - 15 minutes

Andrea explains how to administer tVNS using the Parasym device and standard TENS devices. She also demonstrates a new tragus clip electrode that may increase the accessibility of tVNS to a wider range of people.

If you would like to go to a specific part of the presentation, the times are listed below the video.


0:00 - Introduction

2:06 - Parasym and Standard TENS Devices

3:41 - Ear Clip Electrodes

7:32 - Setting up a TENS Device for tVNS

9:59 - How to Administer tVNS

12:54 - Safety and Side-Effects

The views expressed in these videos are not necessarily the official views of ME/CFS SA, and do not imply endorsement of any treatment, services or products.

Additional search terms: ANS, SNS, PNS, OT

Last edited: 13 July, 2022