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Vagus nerve stimulation could help with neurological disorder: Austrian study

English.news.cn   2014-02-25 09:12:46

VIENNA, Feb. 24 (Xinhua) -- Austrian scientists are testing a new treatment method into neurological disorder dystonia, with early results promising, Austria Press Agency reported Monday.

The disorder is characterised by severe symptoms such as muscle spasms, poor posture and movement disorders. Scientists from the Medical University of Vienna and the Technical University of Vienna have developed a treatment based on neurostimulation with custom-tailored electrical signals.

The disorder has to now been treated with botox injections, but the new treatment uses points on the ear to stimulate the vagus nerve with electrodes. Needle electrodes on the ear are connected to a small stimulation device that is worn around the neck, that emits electric pulses at the nerve ends over a three to four day period.

The Technical University reported that early results on a patient were very promising, with a relief from pain, a reduction in the incidences of involuntary contractions, and a decrease in muscle tension.

The well-being of the patient increased considerably, and she was even able to return to work. Even after the treatment had stopped, the positive effects had remained several days later.

The researchers said they had now planned to make the study larger, in order to determine which kinds of patients would benefit most from the treatment and to what extent.

Editor: Yang Yi
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