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Thousands To Benefit From NHS-Approved Device That Can 'Zap Away' Cluster Headaches

Thousands To Benefit From NHS-Approved Device That Can 'Zap Away' Cluster Headaches

The device delivers a small electric shock to the neck which blocks out the pain of cluster headaches

Tom Wood

Tom Wood

Thousands of people are set to benefit from a new device that can 'zap away' pain from cluster headaches.

Imagine that, just a tiny device that can stop you feeling the pain from headaches? Where can you get one of those?

Well, if you really need a gammaCore device - as it's called - you may be able to get hold of one on the NHS.

It works by delivering a low-level electric current to the neck area in order to block pain signals caused by cluster headaches.

Cluster headaches are relatively rare, and more commonly discovered in men when they enter their 30s and 40s.

The gammaCore has been approved by the NHS.

However, they're really painful, and this device promises to banish that pain for loads of sufferers.

They are often described as a sharp burning or piercing sensation on one side of the head, and can last from anywhere between 15 minutes and three hours.

People who suffer the worst can have as many as eight per day.

That's why those people are going to benefit significantly from the gammaCore, which can prevent them when they are noticed coming on, as well as relieving pain once one has started.

Around one or two people out of every 1,000 people are affected by cluster headaches, and about one in every 20 suffers get little to no benefit from traditional treatments such as painkillers or oxygen, according to NHS England.

Thousands of patients could benefit from the gammaCore.

Following two years of clinical trials, it is hoped that around 11,000 people could be helped by this new device.

NHS medical director Stephen Powis said: "While they may be small, these devices will make a huge difference to people who suffer from these debilitating headaches - relieving painful symptoms and allowing people to go about their daily lives as normal.

"This is the latest example of the NHS testing the latest tech and rolling it out at speed for patients across the country."

A low-level electric current to the neck helps relieve the pain.

Matthew Whitty, director of innovation and life sciences for NHS England, added: "The gammaCore device will provide life-changing benefits for thousands of people and it is just one of a number of technologies that are being mandated by the NHS."

Minister for Innovation Lord Bethell said: "It's hugely encouraging to see innovative technology transform the way we treat illness on the NHS.

"This new gammaCore device will bring relief to many who suffer from cluster headaches and is one of several innovative treatments available to patients on the NHS."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Science, UK News, Technology, NHS, Medicine, Health