Patients with chronic pain have a new treatment opportunity, but further studies will show if the solution can be effective.
Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment, originally developed in Italy, has recently become a new tool for doctors who treat patients who have pain.
The treatment helps patients who suffer from nerve damage, where they feel recurring pain even if no physical injury exists. The brain sends false messages of pain to the nerves, especially in the extremities.
Tom Kocherhans, regional sales manager for Calmare, explained why the treatment is innovative.
“It sends a whole new signal to the brain,” Kocherhans said. “It’s a no pain message.”
The FDA cleared the technology in 2009 and 20 U.S. clinics, five in Utah, now use the system.
Kocherhans said 85 percent of patients using Calmare experienceg a 50 percent pain reduction.
BJ Kramer, a medical assistant at Nexus Paincare, said he places electrodes from the Calmare machine on patients during treatments.
Patients usually have a series of hour-long treatments and then return for booster treatments if the pain returns. The relief can last up to a few months, and for those it helps Kramer said it makes a big difference.
“Patients are actually sleeping through the night,” Kramer said. “In some cases it continues to work for a few months.”
Although Calmare has been successful with many patients, Kramer said it does not work for everyone – some only feel relief during the treatment and the pain returns soon after the electrodes are removed.
Dr. Robert Chalmers has used Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment in his office since June 2010. He said the treatment is another tool to help patients with pain.
“It has helped a lot of patients who did not have any other options,” Chalmers said.
He said the treatment has the potential to help a lot of patients get their lives back, but a correct diagnosis is essential to its effectiveness.
Five different studies testing the Calmare therapy treatment are currently being conducted in the U.S. Their results could determine the future use of the treatment and insurance coverage.
“Insurance and Medicare are the biggest obstacles,” Kocherhans said.
Few insurance companies cover the, on average, $150 treatments, but Kocherhans said he was optimistic that by the end of the year most companies will cover the cost.
For more information about Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment visit calmarett.com.