Medical technology companies are focusing more than ever on products that deliver cheaper, faster, more efficient patient care. Bioengineering is taking leaps and medical technology innovations are at an all-time rise. Electronic aspirin is one such innovation that is fast catching the eyes of the advocates of medical innovations.
“Take two aspirins and call me in the morning,” is the most common but useless method for people who suffer from migraines, cluster headaches, and other causes of chronic, excruciating head or facial pain. The most severe, chronic form of a headache has been long associated with the sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG), a facial nerve bundle by the doctors. However, they haven’t yet found a treatment that works on the SPG long-term.
A patient-powered tool for blocking SPG signals at the first sign of a headache is one of the technologies under clinical investigation at Autonomic Technologies, Inc., (Redwood City, CA). The system helps to place a permanent implant of a small nerve stimulating device in the upper gum on the side of the head which is normally affected by a headache, the lead tip of which connects with the SPG bundle. When a patient senses the onset of a headache, he or she places a handheld remote controller on the cheek nearest the implant. The SPG nerves are simulated by the resulting signals, in turn blocking the pain-causing neurotransmitters.
As per the statistics, 68% people suffering from cluster headaches reported improvement when they used electronic aspirin, as they felt less pain. Also, the average headache was decreased by 31% weekly and 75% reported improvement in the quality of their life. The next time you feel that pain in your head, you know where to look to.