The study showed that all five patients averaged a steady drop in pain levels over the course of the four-week treatment, and that pain levels continued to drop when the treatment finished. Patients' lowest pain levels occurred at a four-week follow-up, at which point they showed an averaged 45 percent drop in their pain scores. The next step following the pilot study will be a larger, controlled study that involves approximately 40 fibromyalgia patients, said device developer M. Bret Schneider, MD, during a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association.
The repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation device is comparable to a TMS device by NeuroStar, but the device uses four coils instead of one to create a pulsing magnetic field and produce an electrical current in the patient's prefrontal cortex, said Dr. Schneider.
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