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Tuesday, June 27, 2006
This Article thanks to MedGadget

'Portable' Magnetic Device Helps Prevent Migraines

A new study, coming out of the Ohio State University Medical Center, has shown that a TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulator) is effective in stopping migraines before they attack. Transcranial magnetic stimulation, a potentially useful clinical modality, uses an alternating magnetic field to influence electrical activity of the brain through magnetic induction. Till now, its usefulness has been thought to apply only to schizophrenia and treatment resistant depression.

From the Ohio State press release:

The device, called TMS, interrupts the aura phase of the migraine, often described as electrical storms in the brain, before they lead to headaches. Auras are neural disturbances that signal the onset of migraine headaches. People who suffer from migraine headaches often describe "seeing" showers of shooting stars, zigzagging lines and flashing lights, and experiencing loss of vision, weakness, tingling or confusion. What typically follows these initial symptoms is intense throbbing head pain, nausea and vomiting.

Dr. Yousef Mohammad, a neurologist at OSU Medical Center who presented the results, says that the patients in this study reported a significant reduction in nausea, noise and light sensitivity post treatment.

"Perhaps the most significant effect of using the TMS device was on the two-hour symptom assessment, with 84 percent of the episodes in patients using the TMS occurring without noise sensitivity. Work functioning also improved, and there were no side effects reported," Mohammad said.

The stimulator sends a strong electric current through a metal coil, which creates an intense magnetic field for about one millisecond. This magnetic pulse, when held against a person's head, creates an electric current in the neurons of the brain, interrupting the aura before it results in a throbbing headache...

"In our study sample, 69 percent of the TMS-related headaches reported to have either no or mild pain at the two-hour post-treatment point compared to 48 percent of the placebo group. In addition, 42 percent of the TMS-treated patients graded their headache response, without symptoms, as very good or excellent compared to 26 percent for the placebo group. These are very encouraging results."

It was previously believed that migraine headaches start with vascular constriction, which results in an aura, followed by vascular dilation that will lead to a throbbing headache. However, in the late 1990s it was instead suggested that neuronal electrical hyperexcitability resulted in a throbbing headache. This new understanding of the migraine mechanism has assisted with the development of the TMS device.
The device may be as portable as a bazooka, but at least your coworkers will take your headaches more seriously if you whip this bad boy out in front of them.

The press release...

Website of Neuralieve Inc., a Sunnyvale, CA company, the maker of the above device...

This Article thanks to MedGadget
 
posted by Abu Miftah at 1:50 PM | Permalink | 1 comments links to this post
Thursday, June 22, 2006
Migraine device An electronic device may help 'zap' away migraine pain before it starts, US research suggests.

The hand-held device creates a short-lived electromagnetic field which 'interrupts' the migraine.

At the American Headache Society meeting researchers said the device was effective in treating nausea, noise and light sensitivity.

UK experts said the findings were interesting but warned it needed to be tested in a much larger study.

People who suffer from migraine headaches often describe seeing showers of shooting stars, zigzagging lines and flashing lights, and experiencing loss of vision, weakness, tingling or confusion.

These neural disturbances or 'auras' signal the onset of migraine headaches.

"Perhaps the most significant effect of using the TMS device was 84% of the episodes in patients using the TMS occurring without noise sensitivity"
Dr Yousef Mohammad, lead researcher
The device, called TMS, delivers a strong electric current through a metal coil, which creates an intense magnetic field for about one millisecond.

The theory is that the electrical charge interrupts the aura phase of the migraine before it leads to headaches.

Currently patients are treated with painkillers or triptans - the first group of drugs designed to treat the causes of migraine rather than the symptoms.

In 23 patients who were treated with the TMS device, 69% reported to have either no or mild pain two hours after treatment compared with 48% of the placebo group.

And 42% of the TMS-treated patients graded their lack of symptoms as very good or excellent compared to 26% for placebo.

The vast majority TMS-treated patients had no noise sensitivity and over half had no light sensitivity.

Nausea

Nausea was also reduced in 88% of TMS-patients compared with 56% of patients treated with a dummy device.

Lead researcher Dr Yousef Mohammad, a neurologist at Ohio State University Medical Center said: "Perhaps the most significant effect of using the TMS device was on the two-hour symptom assessment, with 84% of the episodes in patients using the TMS occurring without noise sensitivity.

"Work functioning also improved, and there were no side effects reported," he said.

A second study of 12 patients found it was feasible for people to use self-administer the electric current using the device at the onset of migraine.

The researchers are now planning a further study in a larger number of patients.

Ann Turner, director of the Migraine Action Association said: "The Association welcomes this new approach to migraine treatment and the results of this initial trial are encouraging.

"However more research in a wider population is required before it can be considered as an addition to the treatment options available to migraine sufferers generally."

Dr Andrew Dowson, director of headache services at Kings College Hospital said the device wouldn't be regarded as 'mainstream medicine' but that it was interesting.

He added that migraines used to be thought of as a problem with constriction of blood vessels but more recently it had become apparent that neural pathways were also involved.

"Since the triptan drugs were developed there hasn't been a big breakthrough in the treatment of migraines and this type of research is the only way we are going to find the next breakthrough.

"The results are somewhat modest though and it's a small study. I would like to see a study done in a much bigger population."
 
posted by Abu Miftah at 11:06 PM | Permalink | 0 comments links to this post
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Here's a Reuter's article on Feverfew studies... enjoy:

Feverfew Extract Reduces Migraine Frequency

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) Nov 29 - A feverfew extract obtained using supercritical carbon dioxide (MIG-99) appears particularly effective in migraine prevention, German researchers report in the November issue of Cephalalgia.

As lead investigator Dr. Hans-Christoph Diener told Reuters Health, "Feverfew in the form of MIG-99 is an effective and safe prophylactic treatment of frequent migraine attacks"

Dr. Diener of the University of Essen and colleagues note that feverfew has traditionally been used to treat migraine, and placebo-controlled trials of the powdered herb have shown promising results.

However, tests using ethanol extracts have been less successful, and the MIG-99 formulation was developed in order to provide an enriched and stable product.

To evaluate the agent, the researchers conducted a double-blind trial in 170 migraine patients. At baseline, migraine frequency was a mean of 4.76 attacks over a 4-week period.

The subjects were then randomized to MIG-99 6.25 mg, three times a day or to placebo for up to 16 weeks.

In the active treatment group, migraine frequency fell by 1.9 attacks per month. In the placebo patients, the corresponding decrease was 1.3 per month.

Possible medication-related adverse events occurred in about 8.4% of MIG-99 patients and 10.2% of placebo patients.

The researchers point out that logistic regression analysis of responder rates gave an odds ratio in favor of MIG-99 of 3.4, and they conclude that the extract is effective and has a favorable benefit-risk ratio.



By David Douglas
 
posted by Abu Miftah at 5:24 PM | Permalink | 0 comments links to this post