I have been treating patients in the clinic for many years using bioelectronic medicine modalities for Chronic Pain. Now, with our Digital Electronic Treatment Unit in combination with online consultations, you can access this treatment to manage your condition at home.
People often say “it's chronic” to describe pain which is really bad, but medically the word ‘chronic’ is used to describe pain which you have had for a long time. If you have had pain for a while, usually more than three months, then changes start to occur in your brain and the nature of the pain alters. It has been shown, for instance, that a tennis elbow which is chronic leads to an increase in electrical Activity in the ‘elbow area’ in the brain, and this enhanced electrical activity spills over into neighbouring areas. Chronic pain is often more difficult to treat than short duration pain and will usually need to be treated in a different way from acute or short term pain because of these changes which have occurred in the brain.
How does it work?
By precise selection of points and stimulation, bioelectronic medicine stimulates the brain to remodel itself, reducing activity in areas which are over-stimulated by chronic pain and stimulating areas which have been unnaturally suppressed. This remodelling is known as ‘neuromodulation’ and contributes to effective pain management for long term pain.
In addition to its effectiveness, this treatment modality does not come with side-effects in contrast to standard medical treatments.
Recently, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) looked at treatments available for Chronic Primary Pain. They reviewed all the evidence and came to the conclusion that standard treatments with painkillers such as paracetamol, aspirin and the antiinflammatories like Ibuprofen are not effective for managing this type of chronic (or long lasting pain). Other medications such as gabapentin, ketamin, and steroids are also seen as largely ineffective, and “all have the capacity to cause some harm”. (1)
Instead, NICE suggests that patients with chronic pain should be offered other treatments such as what we offer with bioelectronic medicine.
For some years The American College of Physicians has been recommending similar approaches as US doctors struggle with the ‘opioid crisis’ and try to avoid prescribing opioid drugs for pain. Many doctors in the UK are also worried that a similar opioid crisis might be on its way in this country.
(1) Chronic pain (primary and secondary) in over 16s: assessment of all chronic pain and management of chronic primary pain. NICE guideline [NG193]Published: 07 April 2021 https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng193
If you have had a painful condition for a while, usually more than three months, then it begins to change its character. Research over recent years shows that after a few months the nature of pain alters and can become more difficult to treat because changes start to occur in the brain and these changes will need different approaches from pain that has only been present for a short time.
The most important part of our treatment for this condition over the past 30 years has been ‘no needle’ electroacupuncture, which often is very effective even in patients with longstanding pain. You can experience the same benefits of this with our treatments.
Our treatment taps into the body's own healing mechanisms and pathways. By careful selection of points and areas on the body we can stimulate anti-inflammatory pathways, boost pain-relieving substances such as endorphins and produce changes in other chemical signalling systems such as dopamine pathways which lead to change and even remodelling in the brain itself. There is a more detailed explanation about ‘no needle’ electroacupuncture and the broader field of Bioelectronic Medicine here.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) have recently issued draft guidelines for doctors to help them manage Chronic Primary Pain, following a review of the evidence for different treatments. The draft guidance notes that standard treatment with painkillers such as paracetamol, aspirin and the anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen are not effective for managing this type of chronic (or long lasting) pain. Other medications such as gabapentin, ketamine and steroids are also seen as largely ineffective, and all have the capacity to cause some harm.
In their place, NICE is now suggesting that patients with chronic primary pain should be offered group exercise sessions, some types of psychological therapy, or acupuncture (these have been the recommendations of the American College of Physicians for some years as US doctors try to avoid prescribing opioid drugs for pain).