ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help

|
|
|
|

Trending News

Strengthening DNA to Prevent Inflammation, Heart Disease, Dementia and More

Magnesium: Widespread Deficiency with Deadly Consequences

Turmeric compound boosts regeneration of brain stem cells

The Most Powerful Natural Antioxidant Discovered to Date - Hydroxytyrosol

Culprits of Autism Identified: Toxins, Gut Bacteria, Nutritional Deficiencies, and Vaccines Made wit...

CoQ10: The Longevity Factor

Omega-3 Fatty Acids Increase Brain Volume

Optimal Prostate Defense Requires a Multi-Modal Strategy

Use of Broad-Spectrum Antibiotics Before Age 2 Associated with Obesity Risk

Extending Life and Fighting Disease with Resveratrol

 
Print Page
Email Article

Magnetic Effect: New Brain Technology Reduces Pain in Fibromyalgia

  [ 12 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
By Cort Johnson • www.ProHealth.com • April 8, 2014


Magnetic Effect: New Brain Technology Reduces Pain in Fibromyalgia
Reprinted with the kind permission of Cort Johnson and Health Rising. 

Numerous studies have found that altered activity in several parts of the brain correlates with pain and fatigue in Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. rTMS, which uses a magnetic coil to alter brain activity levels, has been found to improve the symptoms of a wide variety of neurological and psychiatric disorders in including migraine, stroke, tinnitus, Parkinson’s and depression. It can reduce or increase the excitability of the corticospinal tract depending on the configuration of the coils.

Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) technology has been stymied to some extent in FM by its inability to reach the deeper brain regions affected in the disorder. Two methods used to do this thus far have been unsuccessful; cranking up the power of the magnet can burn the scalp (and cause seizures!), while enlarging the diameter of the magnetic coils to allow the magnetic field to penetrate deeper into the brain results in less precision and can cause side effects.

The Fibromyalgia/pain sensitization market is a lucrative one, however, and advances in rTMS technology are occurring rapidly with numerous clinical trials underway.

The Study

This study used a new approach to target the deeply buried anterior cingulate region, a part of the brain that has been implicated multiple times in both Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

The anterior cingulate cortex, with its effect not only on autonomic nervous system functioning but on cognition (decision-making, reward anticipation) and pain, almost seems made to order for Fibromyalgia. This study targeted the dorsal region of the anterior cingulate cortex which is connected with the prefrontal cortex – a major player in chronic pain.

(The ventral part of the ACC is connected with amygdala, nucleus accumbens, hypothalamus, and anterior insula - all of which are also implicated in increased pain. )

First, they tested the efficacy of three coil configurations, one of which reduced pain, one which increased pain, and one which had variable effects, and then gave healthy controls and people with Fibromyalgia 20 sessions of the two positive configurations.

Results

Former studies targeting an upper brain region (prefrontal cortex) achieved a 29% reduction in pain in FM- a good finding in this hard to treat disorder – but one configuration in this present study almost doubled that result, achieving a 56% reduction in pain four weeks after the last treatment.

This suggested either the longer treatment duration (20 sessions vs 10) or the different target (the ACC vs the prefrontal cortex) were responsible for the decreased pain. It will be interesting to see, as rTMS machine penetrate the deeper areas of the brain, how much more effective they become.

The relatively long-lived nature of the effect suggested to the researchers that the rTMS was having neuroplastic results; i.e. it was altered neural pathways in the brain. (Increased pain sensitivity is due to a neuroplastic process which results in the pain neurons firing in response to very small stimuli.) They recommended that future studies determine if the rTMS was altering brain structure and connectivity.

The fact that different coil configurations were needed to reduce pain in healthy controls (given a heat stimulus) and in Fibromyalgia patients suggested, as Apkarian’s brain scans have indicated, that pain is produced in different regions in the brains of healthy people and in people with chronic pain.

Interestingly, given recent findings suggesting altered disease processes occur over time in ME/CFS, the authors suggested that different coil configurations may be necessary for patients of different ages.

Questions

Many questions remain to be answered about rTMS, the most prominent of which may be its affordability. A 2009 study which estimated average costs at $300/session suggests the 20 days of rTMS in this study would probably cost upwards of $6,000, putting it out of the reach of many people if it is not covered by insurance.

Several studies, however, have found it to be helpful and its non-invasive, usually side-effect free approach is appealing. As the technology improves and researchers can alter the activity levels of deeper and deeper parts of the brain, it’s effectiveness may increase as well. This is a technology to keep an eye on.

_______________

About the Author:  Cort Johnson has had ME/CFS for over 30 years. The founder of Phoenix Rising and Health Rising, Cort has contributed hundreds of blogs on chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and their allied disorders over the past 10 years. Find more of Cort's and other bloggers' work at Health Rising.



Please Discuss This Article:   Post a Comment 



[ Be the first to comment on this article ]




 
Free Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia Newsletters
Subscribe to
Our FREE
Newsletter
Subscribe Now!
Receive up-to-date ME/CFS & Fibromyalgia treatment and research news
 Privacy Guaranteed  |  View Archives

Save on Vitamins and Supplements

Featured Products

Vitamin D3 Extreme™ by ProHealth Vitamin D3 Extreme™ by ProHealth
50,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Prescription Strength
FibroSleep™ by ProHealth FibroSleep™ by ProHealth
The All-in-One Natural Sleep Aid
Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil Ultra EPA - Fish Oil
Ultra concentrated source of essential fish oils
Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Energy NADH™ 12.5mg
Improve Energy & Cognitive Function
Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra ATP+, Double Strength
Get energized with malic acid & magnesium

Natural Remedies

Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Unlocking the Secrets of Peppermint, Acacia and Fennel Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Unlocking the Secrets of Peppermint, Acacia and Fennel
VIDEO: Healthy Eating and Fibromyalgia VIDEO: Healthy Eating and Fibromyalgia
Undenatured Type II Collagen - Chicken Soup for Your Joints Undenatured Type II Collagen - Chicken Soup for Your Joints
Running on Empty? Fuel Up with NADH Running on Empty? Fuel Up with NADH
The Revolutionary 'Good Fat' That Promotes Heart, Brain, Bone and Joint Health The Revolutionary 'Good Fat' That Promotes Heart, Brain, Bone and Joint Health

FIBROMYALGIA RESOURCES
What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia 101
Fibromyalgia Symptoms
Fibromyalgia Treatments
| CFS RESOURCES
What is CFS?
ME/CFS 101
ME/CFS Symptoms
ME/CFS Treatments
| FORUMS
Fibromyalgia
ME/CFS
ADVANCED MEDICAL LABS
WHOLESALE  |  AFFILIATES
GUARANTEE
CONTACT US
PRIVACY
RSS
SITE MAP
ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus
Credit Card Processing