Hand-held Device Could Provide Promising Relief for Migraine Pain

A new hand-held device could deliver efficient pain relief for patients suffering from migraine with aura, according to an article featured in The Lancet Neurology.

Through a safety/efficacy assessment of the device, which can be used at home, researchers at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine have found that the treatment can offer patients up to 48 hours of pain relief.

Migraine with aura is accompanied by visual symptoms such as zigzag lines, regions of visual loss, tingling and numbness, and even difficulties with language. These symptoms usually begin prior to the onset of pain.

The device delivers single pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (sTMS), which consists of individual magnetic pulses, to the back of the head.

Study data confirms that sTMS most likely disrupts electrical events in the brain that may be responsible for causing migraine with aura. Previous studies have also demonstrated that sTMS reduces migraine pain and is well tolerated by patients.

Researchers used a randomized, sham-controlled trial to determine the efficiency of a replica of the device. A group of 102 subjects received active sham impulse and a group of 99 subjects received inactive sham impulse. To create successful blinding, the devices used in both groups made clicking sounds and vibrated upon use.

The subjects were instructed to treat three migraine with aura attacks with the devices over the span of three months. Pain and symptoms prior to treatment and at specific intervals afterwards were also recorded by the subjects.

According to the results, sTMS was more efficient, with patients experiencing no pain at follow-up intervals of 2, 24 and 48 hours. Symptoms were not intensified in the sTMS group and there were no serious device-related events reported.

Among the feedback from subjects in the sTMS group was the user-friendliness of the device.

A new hand-held device could deliver efficient pain relief for patients suffering from migraine with aura, according to an article featured in The Lancet Neurology.