Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2011 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Alpha Rhythm

  • Cindy B. Ivanhoe
  • Natasha K. Eaddy
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-79948-3_4



Electromagnetic oscillations in the frequency range of 8–12 Hz arising from synchronous and coherent electrical activity of the thalamic pacemaker cells in the human brain. Also called Berger’s wave.

Current Knowledge

Alpha waves are believed to arise from the white matter of the occipital lobes. They increase during periods of relaxation with eyes closed. Alpha waves are thought to represent activity in the visual cortex and are associated with feelings of calmness and relaxation. Alpha waves increase when eyes are closed and during meditation and are associated with creativity and mental coordination.

References and Readings

  1. Bragatti, J. A., De Moura Cordova, N., Rossato, R., & Bianchin, M. M. (2007). Alpha coma and locked-in syndrome. Journal of Clinical Neurophysiology, 24(3), 308.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Min, B. K., Busch, N. A., Debener, S., Kranczioch, C., Hansimayr, S., Engel, A. K., et al. (2007). The best of both worlds: Phase reset of human EEG alpha activity and additive power contribute to ERP generation. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 65(1), 58–68.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cindy B. Ivanhoe
    • 1
  • Natasha K. Eaddy
    • 2
  1. 1.Neurorehabilitation Specialists Baylor College of MedicineThe Institute for Rehabilitation and ResearchHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Neurorehabilitation Specialists Baylor College of MedicineBrain Injury and Stroke Program FellowHoustonUSA