Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback

May 2007- Vol 1, Issue 2
In This Issue
Presidential Message
Good News for Clinicians
2008 AAPB Annual Meeting
Fall Workshop
Chapter Events
AAPB Committees and Task Forces
Welcome New Members
Other News
Quick Links
Presidential Message
Rumor Control
CAM, Biofeedback, and the FDA: No Cause for Concern
by Alan Glaros, PhD

Recently, we have received calls and e-mails from members expressing concern that the FDA is going to regulate who can do biofeedback. We have reviewed the position paper they issued and want to share the content with you.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) plans to regulate devices used in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). The important word in the preceding sentence is devices. The FDA has no plans to regulate practice. 

According to the FDA, biofeedback is an example of mind-body medicine, and "practices in this domain [mind-body medicine] would not be subject to our [FDA] jurisdiction." The FDA will continue to regulate biofeedback machines as class II devices. This is existing FDA policy that has been in place for many years.

We believe concerns that the FDA will regulate biofeedback practice are unfounded. AAPB has long recommended that members seek information from vendors about FDA approval before making a purchase. We continue to recommend this course of action. 
For more information, visit the
FDA web site. You can also see the joint letter that AAPB, BCIA and ISNR sent in response to the FDA's actions.
Good News for Clinicians
A study conducted at the University of Iowa showed that biofeedback for dyssnyergic defecation was better than laxatives, diet and exercise or a sham treatment that included muscle relaxation and coping strategies. The findings appear in the March issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
In a meta-analysis of the effectiveness of biofeedback for migraine, two German researchers reported "robust" effects of biofeedback for this painful condition. "Efficacy of biofeedback for migraine: A meta-analysis," Y. Nestoriuc and A. Martin (Germany), Pain, 128 (1-2), 111-127.
2008 AAPB Annual Meeting
What topics would you like to see at the 2008 meeting in Daytona Beach, Florida?  Please email your suggestions to Fred Shaffer, Program Chair, at Be sure to put the dates on your calendar.
In addition, AAPB has issued its Call for Submissions for the 39th Annual Meeting.
You can now submit your workshops, short courses, symposia, posters and oral presentations to the online submission site, which will be open until October 14 at midnight. No late submissions will be accepted.
Fall Workshop
AAPB Logo 

Presented by: Richard Gevirtz, PhD; Paul Lehrer, PhD; and Stephen Porges, PhD
This workshop is intended for biofeedback practitioners with some preliminary  background in heart rate variability (HRV) and HRV biofeedback. It will cover "Polyvagal Theory" (Porges, 1995), its development, status, and implications, and HRV measurement with an emphasis on clinical utility. From these foundations, applications for developmental, psychophysiological, anxiety, and pulmonary disorders will be covered. It is expected that the participant will be able to read the HRV literature with greater understanding and be able to design an HRV biofeedback protocol for relevant  disorders.
Online registration is now open.
Chapter Events
The Northern California Regional Meeting
Saturday, June 2
San Rafael, California

Speakers include:

  • Chris Gilbert - Treating Chronic Headaches: Biofeedback and Beyond
  • Paul Hamilton - Clinical Applications for Depression and Mood-Shifting with Real-time Localized fMRI Neurofeedback
  • Lewis Mehl Madrona, PhD - Spiritualism and Cultural Enhancement in Diabetes Control; Combining Spiritualism and Physiology

Details and registration information.

The Mid-Atlantic Society for Biofeedback and Behavioral Medicine Annual Spring Conference
Saturday, June 2
Columbia, Maryland
Speakers include:
  • Margaret Chesney, PhD - A Perspective at the Crossroads of Complementary, Integrative and Behavioral Medicine
  • Monica Myklebust, MD - Integrative Medicine: Clinical Applications
  • Galena Kuiper, LCSW - An Integrative Approach for a Patient with Multiple Diagnoses
  • Elsie Ferguson, PhD - Clinical Psychology: Selected Case Studies

For more information, email Bea Haskins, President of the MASBBM, at

Pennsylvania Society of Behavioral Medicine and Biofeedback Annual Spring Conference
Saturday and Sunday, June 2 and 3
Doylesville, Pennsylvania
Speakers include:
  • Robert Coben, PhD, a researcher and a pioneer in the use of brain-based biofeedback for autism.
  • Betty Jarusiewicz, PhD, is the director of the Atlantic Counseling Center in New Jersey. The center specializes in neurofeedback for the treatment of individuals on the autistic spectrum.
More information available on the
PSBMB website.
Biofeedback Society of Florida Conference 
June 30 - July 1, 2007
Orlando, Florida
Featured speaker:
Dr. Vietta "Sue" Wilson of York University in Toronto is an internationally renowned expert in sports psychology and optimal performance who has trained Olympic athletes using traditional and biofeedback performance enhancing techniques. Dr. Wilson is also the author of the Thought Technology, Ltd. optimal performance and health suite for their Biograph Infiniti software. Her lecture will include a discussion of her research on psychophysiological profiling and EEG brain mapping of elite performers and demonstrations using the Biograph Infiniti software. 
AAPB Committees and Task Forces
AAPB has 11 standing committees, all required by our by-laws.  This is a cumbersome structure that makes it difficult  to respond to opportunities as they arise. 
A much better strategy - one that takes better advantage of the knowledge and enthusiasm of our members - is to rely more heavily on task forces. Compared to standing committees, task forces can be put together quickly, can be charged to carry out a specific task by a due date, and can be disbanded when their work is done. Task forces can get more work done than committees because individuals appointed to them are passionate about the task and more willing to work for a defined period of time.
AAPB's Board would like to simplify our committee structure.  In the place of our 11 committees, we would like to reduce them to six:
  • Membership
  • Finance
  • Elections
  • Ethics
  • Communications
  • Program

In this group of six, the Finance committee would be entirely new and charged with the responsibility of keeping AAPB's finances in good order. 

We're already taking advantage of our new emphasis on task forces.  In one example, President Alan Glaros asked Mark Schwartz to chair a multi-association task force on the definition of biofeedback.  Members from BCIA and ISNR will serve on this task force.  The work will be completed this fall.  Our goal is to have a definition that all major organizations involved in biofeedback agree to.  With this definition in hand, we could approach the FDA with an offer to help them better define biofeedback.  We could educate the public better.
We'd like to hear your thoughts about this potential change.  Let us know what you think by e-mailing President Glaros at
Welcome New Members!
We welcome the following individuals who have become new members of AAPB  since March 12, 2007.  We're delighted to have you join the premier international society for mind-body interactions in research, healthcare and education.  Thank you for the confidence you've placed in us!
  • Mary Babl, West Point, Nebraska
  • Pinky Bansal, Piscataway, New Jersey
  • Christine Coolidge, PhD, Hampton Bays, New York
  • Jacqueline de Vries, Maywah, New Jersey
  • Robert Diamond, Prescott, Arizona
  • Marti Elvebak, Los Altos, California
  • Betty Everett, PhD, Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Neuza Ferraz Arruda, Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Michael Freytag, LPC, NCC, CBT, Jackson, Mississippi
  • Ma Dolores, Gaxiola, Mexico City, Mexico
  • Lindsay Havlicek, Lake Placid, New York
  • Susan Ingalls, Santa Rosa, California
  • Michelle Little, Richmond, Virginia
  • Laurita Putegnat, San Antonio, Texas
  • Ms. Rue, Sedona, Arizona
  • Douglas Scott, PsyD, LMFT, Rancho de Taos, New Mexico
  • Joseph Ward, Nicholasville, KY
  • Harvey Wells, MSc, PGCAP, QEEGT, London, United Kingdom
Other News
Did You Know?
Our ratings for our journal, Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, go up when you make a request for a reprint through your library.  If your library can access the journal through a portal to Kluwer, try using that mechanism, and in the process, support AAPB.
And did you notice the new, large format for the journal?  Very nice.
We inadvertently referred to Karan Kverno as "he"  in the last issue of the newsletter.  She has kindly forgiven us.
Association for Applied Psychophysiology & Biofeedback
10200 W. 44th Avenue, Suite 304
Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
Phone: 303/422-8436 Fax: 303/422-8894