In December 2013, the FDA approved its first-ever migraine treatment treatment device. The good news is that this treatment went through the actual premarket approval system, instead of being eased in using the 510(k) equivalence system that means no trials are needed for approvals.
The bad news is that, although we know the treatment works, we don’t know how it works, who it works for, and whether it might work for other types of headaches.
Magnetic Pulses Drive Migraines Away
The migraine control device uses magnetic pulses to control migraine pain. The device is called Cenera Transcranial Magnetic Stimulator (TMS), and it’s only available by prescription.
It works like this: when you have a migraine, you hold the device to the back of your head and press a button. The machine then releases either one or a series of magnetic pulses into your brain, potentially eliminating your pain.
In the clinical trial the FDA considered key to approval, 38% of migraine sufferers that used the treatment had no pain two hours after treatment, compared to 17% of people in the control group that used a sham device. After 24 hours, 34% of people who had used the TMS had no pain, compared to only 10% in the control group.
Limitations and Provisos
So far, the Cenera TMS has only been tested for people with classic migraine, migraine with the visual aura. It hasn’t been tested for people with other types of migraine, or other types of headaches.
Cenera TMS also didn’t reduce other migraine symptoms, such as nausea, light-sensitivity, sound sensitivity, and more.
Finally, the system is of course not suitable for people with metal in their head that responds to magnetic waves.
A Diversity of Migraine Treatments
This new migraine treatment joins our constantly-expanding arsenal of weapons against this still-mysterious condition, and we need them. Since migraine sufferers have tried an average of four different migraine treatments, and about two-thirds are still unsatisfied with the results, the more treatments we have the better.
TMJ treatment has also been shown to reduce migraine attacks. Unlike Cenera TMS, however, TMJ treatment is also effective against other migraine symptoms when it is effective against migraines.
If you’re unsatisfied with your current migraine treatment and want to learn whether TMJ treatment can help you, please call (303) 691-0267 at the TMJ Therapy & Sleep Center of Colorado in Denver today for a consultation.