New Jersey Patent of the Month – April 2022

Electrical stimulation has been a therapy for various medical conditions for decades. Pacemakers can treat numerous cardiac muscle ailments, deep brain stimulation is used to treat pain and movement disorders, and stimulating sacral nerve roots can aid in treating radiating pain. ElectroCore, Inc. believes neuromodulation can go even further in medical treatments. 

Recently, they have developed a treatment method which uses vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) as an electrotherapy option for migraines. Those who suffer from migraines are often met with chronic headaches, intense pain, sensitivity to light, nausea and more. These can be debilitating and can last from 4 to 72 hours.

ElectroCore’s method allows for a noninvasive treatment option, with electrodes placed directly on the skin of the patient. In the case of a migraine, the electrode would be positioned over the vagus nerve on the neck. This treatment can be controlled by your phone, making it possible to tackle a migraine from anywhere. 

Using the phone’s camera, the user can ensure the electrodes are positioned correctly each time even when a medical practitioner is not present. The rear camera can image fluorescent spots which indicate reference positions on the skin. As sessions are repeated, the device can learn and grow in accuracy for the specific patient.  

The therapy session is controlled by predetermined parameters including strength and duration of stimulation. Depending on the patient’s individual needs, the treatment typically lasts for 2 minutes, repeated in a few sessions. The noninvasive stimulation blocks the pain signals responsible for the attacks, creating near instant pain relief as well as prevention of future attacks.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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