By Pat Anson, Editor
A wearable device that stimulates the release of natural pain-relieving endorphins provides significant relief to patients with chronic knee, shoulder or back pain, according to the results of small clinical trial.
The Oska Pulse uses Pulsed Electromagnetic Field technology (PEMF) to dilate blood vessels, which increases blood flow, reduces inflammation, and releases the body’s endorphins to reduce joint and muscle pain.
The double blind, placebo-controlled study involved 30 patients who were recruited from two San Diego area pain clinics. Participants were given either an Oska Pulse or a placebo device and asked to wear them several times a day for two weeks, while completing a daily log to track their pain, stress and usage.
The study findings, first published in Practical Pain Management, found that the majority of participants who used the Oska Pulse had a significant decrease in pain levels. Some also reported a decrease in stress.
“There was significantly more reduction in pain in the OSKA Pulse group after 14 days of use than placebo. These results suggested that the OSKA Pulse may be an effective tool in pain attenuation,” wrote lead author Joseph Shurman, MD, an anesthesiologist at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, CA.
“Data analyses showed interesting trends in subjective pain scores, including a slight increase in pain in the placebo group after day 7, while the OSKA Pulse group, on average, reported a decline in pain intensity.”
Previous studies have found that PEMF therapy can be used to treat a variety of chronic pain conditions, not just simple muscle aches and joint pain. A recent survey of Oska Pulse users found that half had some type of pain for more than five years.
"I've had RSD/CRPS in my left leg for 21 years and tried many meds and treatments over the years, including 10 years of ketamine infusions," said Tracey M., an Oska customer quoted in a news release. "I started using Oska Pulse nine months ago and my pain was reduced more than ever before. I recently danced at my daughter's wedding. Before Oska, I wasn't even sure if I'd be able to attend."
PNN columnist Arlene Grau, who lives with rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia, was at first skeptical about the Oska Pulse. But after trying it for several days, she found the device gave her some temporary pain relief.
“I originally thought the Oska Pulse was not going to work for me, since I'm used to the TENS unit shocking my body and actually feeling something happening. You don’t really ‘feel’ anything when the Oska Pulse is on, but I felt a difference after every use,” Arlene said. “I wouldn't necessarily compare it to the relief I get from opioids, but it was enough to make me feel like I didn't need to take prescription drugs every 4 hours. Which is a triumph.”
Before using the Oska Pulse, it is recommended that cancer patients, or those who are pregnant, nursing, or have a pacemaker or defibrillator, should consult with their physician.
The Oska Pulse is available on Amazon for $399.