move over aspirin …

A small device implanted in the upper gum blocks pain-causing neurotransmitters to help prevent a headache.

A small device implanted in the upper gum blocks pain-causing neurotransmitters to help prevent a headache.

Those who suffer debilitating migraines, cluster headaches or other chronic facial pain may soon have a new method of relief, thanks to Autonomic Technologies, Inc., a medical device company in Redwood City, CA. The company has created a patient-powered tool, currently under clinical investigation, designed to block signals from the sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG), a facial nerve bundle located on either side of the nose. Researchers believe the SPG is associated with severe headaches.

The ATI Neurostimulation System involves the permanent implant of a small nerve-stimulating device in the upper gum on the same side of the patient’s headache pain. The patient controls his or her own stimulation treatment by turning on the remote controller and placing it on the cheek over the inserted ATI Neurostimulator, thus blocking the pain-causing neurotransmitters. To stop treatment, the remote controller is removed from the cheek, turning off stimulation therapy. ati-spg.com