Pain. Pain. There’s nothing else Jonah is feeling right now except for pain, specifically an intense headache. She fumbles through her emergency bag filled with home medications to find the bottle of aspirin only to find out that she has ran out of it. She groans as she tries to push herself into buying some in the nearest pharmacy, all while cursing herself for not preparing for times like this. She makes a mental note of keeping the aspirin bottle stocked at all times while preparing to leave. If only, she didn’t need to go and buy aspirin, if only there were devices or new technology that would help her in her current situation. If only…
As most know, innovations have crept its way up in the healthcare profession through the years, helping to address healthcare demands and improving patient care. These innovations have made wonders and have made things a whole lot easier for healthcare professionals. One of which is the electronic aspirin.
New remedy for migraine?
Who would forget those times when you would just roll over the bed in pain? Or those times when you get all irritated and feel like your skull is about to burst? All because of migraines or headaches.
Studies have associated the most severe, chronic forms of headache with the sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG), a facial nerve bundle, which lies in a bony cavity called the pterygopalatine fossa, which is deep in the midface.It supplies the lacrimal gland, paranasal sinuses, glands of the mucosa of the nasal cavity and pharynx, the gingiva, and the mucous membrane and glands of the hard palate, thus is thought to be attributed to nasal problems, migraines, cluster headaches and other miscellaneous pains in the head and face areas.
Recently, scientists have invented a new technology attached to Sphenopalatine Ganglion (SPG), to help people suffering from migraines, cluster headaches, and other causes of chronic, excruciating head or facial pain, and those who believe that ordinary aspirin requires much time to kill pain.
The Electronic Aspirin is a patient-powered tool for blocking SPG signals at the first sign of a headache. Still being investigated, the system involves the permanent implant of a small nerve-stimulating device in the upper gum on the side of the head, which is normally affected by headache. The lead tip of the implant is connected with the SPG bundle, and when a patient senses the onset of a headache, he/she places a handheld remote controller on the cheek nearest the implant. The resulting signals stimulate the SPG nerves and block the pain-causing neurotransmitters.The device is positioned behind the nasal passages and eye sockets, as the SPG bundle of nerves is actually outside the brain.
The implanted device consists of a tiny tail that sits against the nerves. When patients feel headaches coming on, they simply hold a smartphone-sized remote control to their cheek that sends a radio signal to the implanted device, then triggering a slight electrical charge to stimulate nerve cells. The patient can turn it on and off as needed. Moreover, the patient can leave it as is or take it out, when no longer necessary.
However, though the electronic aspirin is surgically implanted into the patient’s head, there is still a need for a medical technologist.
Helping the society
Various surveys and researches reveal that about 45 million Americans suffer from migraines and chronic headaches. Some pain may be even so intense that activities of daily living are disrupted. Electronic Aspirin is able to improve the lives of chronic headache/migraine sufferers. Studies reveal that in a certain clinical trial for people who suffered chronic headaches, upon using Electronic Aspirin, 68% reported improvement. Furthermore, weekly average headaches were reduced by 31% and 75% of those reported improvement in their quality of life.