Neuromodulation Device Being Implanted to Treat Multiple Chronic Pain Conditions

Neuromodulation Device Being Implanted to Treat Multiple Chronic Pain Conditions

By Staff

Editor’s Note: National Pain Report previously ran an article regarding this technology as used for shoulder pain in stroke survivors. This following story was prompted by a press release by Bioness, which widens the scope of areas and conditions that may be treated with the system. 

A series of implantations of a small device to manage chronic pain from varied peripheral neuralgias has recently been completed, and the doctors using the new technology are pleased with the results.

The device, called StimRouter, is the first FDA approved minimally invasive neuromodulation device designed to treat chronic pain of a peripheral nerve origin. The device is currently being used to treat peripheral pain focusing on the following areas and conditions:

  • Axillary nerve (e.g. post-stroke shoulder pain)
  • Ulnar nerve (e.g. cubital tunnel syndrome)
  • Ilioinguinal (e.g. post-surgical hernia complication)
  • Superior Cluneal nerve (e.g. lower back neuralgia)

“For many years we have had limited solutions to help our patients manage their debilitating pain,” shared William Porter McRoberts, MD, a trained Physiatrist and Interventional Spine and Pain Management Specialist based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. “As hard as it is to understand the impact of one’s pain, it is easy to see when relief is delivered. I’m very pleased with how well my patients are responding to the StimRouter and believe that the technology will be suitable for a greater range of patients in the future.”

Dr. Michael Sein, a rehabilitation physician at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York told National Pain Report that the device, “Represents a paradigm shift in the management of post-stroke shoulder pain. I like the ease of implementation which can be completed in an ambulatory setting as well as the significant levels of pain reduction that is achievable in patients that have failed to improve with prior therapy.”

Dr. McRoberts also shared with National Pain Report that, “100% of my implanted patients have had dramatic improvements in pain. One patient has even had complete resolution of her symptoms. I’ve been extremely happy.”

Bioness_stimrouter_Set3_073015_implant

Click for larger image

The device consists of a thin, implanted lead with conductive electrode, external pulse transmitter (EPT), and hand-held wireless patient programmer. It works by transmitting electrical signals transdermally (through the skin) from the EPT through the electrode, down the lead to the target nerve. It’s programmed by the physician, but is controlled by the patient to address the patients specific, changing pain management needs.

The StimRouter differs from traditional neuromodulation products like Spinal Cord Stimulators in several ways, the most significant being the removal of the large battery and pulse generator to outside the body, allowing the implantation of the small, 15cm lead to be completed in 15-30 minutes while the patient is awake. Also, other products require a “trial lead” or removal of the lead after 30 days, amounting to a second surgery. With the StimRouter the trial and implant are combined in one surgical procedure. “After over 100 implants in the US in multiple peripheral nerves around the body, the results have been very compelling – some of which are represented in patient testimonials on the StimRouter.com website,” reported Mark Geiger, Director of Marketing for Implantables at Bioness. “We are very pleased in the culmination of over a decade of electrical stimulation R&D being applied to meet this important unmet need in patients with chronic pain.”

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Authored by: Staff

There are 10 comments for this article
  1. Jean Price at 11:12 pm

    I’d guess I would need about twenty+ electrodes…so that’s not a real plus for some of us. But if a singular nerve was involved and the risks were acceptable, guess this could be good. I would think acupressure and topical NSAIDs or lidocaine patches would work for one area also. It all depends on the individual!

  2. Candy at 12:42 pm

    Maria Molaro
    Check into the Nevro SCS system.
    My son obtained foot and ankle pain relief for the first time in 8 years after trying everything under the sun, short of surgery or a BTK amputation.

  3. Tim Mason at 9:38 am

    The Ultima 5 T.E.N.S. unit is what you want . I got my first one in 2008 by Rx. You can buy online for $50 bucks or less. Comes with everything you need. Electrodes and carrying case. Has several modes.

  4. Angel at 7:21 am

    Please try TENS therapy before having this or another device implanted. This is a last resort device. There are levels of different TENS therapy devices. From OTC ones like icy hot brand patch portable tens to very expensive professional ones you can purchase from health care providers. While I hope these new implantable devices being relief, try each level of TENS before going implantable.

  5. Doc Anonymous at 4:55 pm

    There is more information about this device than we usually see from device companies. It is approved for focal peripheral neuropathic conditions that are localized to one nerve. On first glance it certainly is less invasive and less risky than epidural steroids of spinal cord stimulators.

    But, it does restrict the use of MRI. If it is too close to the magnet it will cause pain and/or burning of the tissues. I also note that it is not compatible with use of an external defibrillator.

    I guess it appears to work, is less invasive than other devices, but it will also limit access to state of the art medical care for other problems.

  6. Tim Mason at 1:08 pm

    Stacey,
    You can find out more information from the FDA. http://www.FDA.gov
    Search medical device recalls. Search by device name. In this case Bioness or device type. In this case use Stimrouter.
    Here you will find any complaints or recalls.
    One simply cannot rely on the information given on the CD or info packet they physician hands you.
    The Neuromodulation market is projected to be worth 12 billion in 2 years and is claimed to cure everything from acne, erectile dysfunction, etc.
    These devices are used for last resort cases NOT first line treatment.

  7. connie at 6:46 am

    Interesting. Or will this prove to be yet another time that doctors are pleased with the result of a treatment (their thickening wallet) and the patient is left further in debt with no reduction of their pain?

  8. Stacey at 6:01 am

    Where can I get more information on this device?

  9. Judy Valentine at 5:08 am

    Would this device be effective in alleviating pain from post hip fracture repair?

  10. Maria Molaro at 3:12 am

    But are there any results pertaining to peripheral nerve issues of the lower legs and feet? Does anyone know of anything other than medication that helps idiopathic peripheral nerve pain of lower extremities? Thanks