It may not help alleviate symptoms associated with all types of migraines, but a new device has received the FDA’s approval to be marketed as a migraine treatment.
The device is intended to help adults who experience these headaches preceded by aura. According to a Fox News report, the Cerena Transcranial Magnetic Stimulator (CTM) targets the brain’s visual cortex, responsible for visual processing. This technology that is designed to alleviate pain is somewhat similar to migraine neurostimulation, which targets supraorbital and occipital nerves using gentle electrical impulses to treat acute pain.
The handheld device is held against the head when migraine pain occurs. The user presses a button that transmits a magnetic energy impulse into the brain. Reported side effects were few but included dizziness, speech impairment and sinusitis. The device is not to be used by individuals with seizure disorders or metals in their upper bodies. With neurostimulation, the migraine sufferer also controls the electrical impulses when he experiences pain.
Aura preceding headaches can include events like visual disturbances and motor or sensory impairment. Approximately 30 percent of the people studied in the approval process experienced aura before their migraine attacks.
The FDA research during the approval process of this new migraine treatment device found that 38% of 201 subjects with migraines experienced relief two hours after receiving the stimulation. There was no finding with respect to the device’s effect on other types of migraines or other typical symptoms such as nausea and sound sensitivity.
Neurostimulation on the other hand, has been shown to reduce pain in up to 80% of chronic migraine sufferers who undergo the treatment. If you have been diagnosed with chronic migraines, a neurostimulation migraine procedure may be right for you. However, if your migraine condition is not chronic, and is accompanied by aura the newly approved CTM might be something to add to your drug free toolbox.