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Lumere Senior Medical Device Specialist Simon Kerr recently joined over 2,800 attendees from over 20 countries at the North American Neuromodulation Society (NANS) 2018 Annual Meeting. Below he answers a few questions about what he saw and heard.

Vendors often introduce new products and technologies to market at NANS. Anything exciting this year?

Amidst all of the new technologies on display, two vendors announced new products that I found particularly exciting in their approach to providing greater relief to chronic back and leg pain patients.

First, Nevro highlighted its latest-generation spinal cord stimulation (SCS) system, the recently approved Senza II. The Senza II delivers Nevro’s proprietary paresthesia-free high-frequency (10,000 Hz) stimulation (HF10), but in a smaller size than the original Senza. Nevro also announced results from three separate studies investigating potential new indications for HF10 therapy. The results are very promising.

The second new product I would highlight is the Spectra WaveWriter from Boston Scientific, which uniquely allows for simultaneous paresthesia-based and “sub-perception” therapy. In promoting the device, Boston Scientific touted results from two studies, one published and the other ongoing.

What were the two studies?

PROCO is a published study, supported by Boston Scientific, suggesting that equivalent pain relief can be achieved using spinal cord stimulation at levels ranging from 1,000 to 10,000 Hz. This is notable because Boston Scientific—unlike Nevro—does not offer 10,000 Hz stimulation.

The WHISPER study is an ongoing randomized, controlled trial evaluating the combination of simultaneous paresthesia-based and “sub-perception” therapy compared to either therapy option in isolation. The preliminary results show that when patients were able to choose their therapy, their likelihood of achieving pain relief was increased by 62%. In addition, the majority of patients preferred having the option of combination therapy.

Any final thoughts?

While the two new products I mentioned were the ones that most caught my eye, neuromodulation is a field in which we’re consistently seeing new evidence being published and new technologies being developed to serve these often-difficult-to-treat patients. At Lumere, we’ve fielded a lot of questions from clients related to neuromodulation, including questions related to spinal cord, deep brain and vagus nerve stimulation. We will continue to monitor these developments to help hospital systems provide the best, most cost-effective care.

The Lumere research team will keep these and similar topics on our watch list as we continue to review indications and outcomes.


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