Sumary of The benefits of embracing digital technology in chronic pain management:
- BioWaveGO medical consultant Dr Dominic Hegarty highlights the need for greater access to neuromodulation devices for chronic pain treatment.
- The pandemic has highlighted the need to build more resilient health systems, re-think traditional solutions and look for other options centred around innovative technology that provide equitable and timely access to treatment and services.
- Conventional physical therapy, medication or surgery are simply not enough for most patients.
- Despite the existence of effective therapeutic options, 67% of patients living with chronic pain are receiving inadequate treatment.
- and 61% of Europeans who could benefit from neuromodulation technology as a real-time treatment never get offered the therapy despite its availability across Europe.
- These studies highlight an urgent need to not only address health budgeting and resourcing barriers that restrict the treatment of chronic pain, but also to ensure training and continuous medical education of healthcare workers to optimise access to essential pain treatments.
- The concept of using electrical current (neuromodulation) to manage pain was first considered in the 1960s.
- By the 1990s, there were specific percutaneous leads which meant that the application of an electric current to the spine (spinal cord stimulation) could be used to provide quick and effective drug-free pain relief.