A patented device developed by a clinician-scientist at Rambam Health Care Campus helps to alleviate migraines and has made Time Magazine’s list of the 100 top inventions for 2019.
Time Magazine – one of the most prominent magazines in the world – recently published a list of the 100 best inventions in 2019. Among the many inventions designed to make our lives better is Nerivio, a device developed at Rambam to address one of our more painful problems –migraine headaches.
The development, led by Professor David Yarnitsky, Director of Rambam’s Department of Neurology, was first published in the medical journal, Neurology, approximately two-and-a-half years ago, when it was reported that a preliminary study at Rambam had tested an innovative device for the treatment of migraines and found it to be effective. Nerivio—which is controlled by the user’s smartphone—is affixed to the upper arm and sends electrical currents to the body, blocking the pain signals characteristic of a migraine. The device was developed in conjunction with Israeli hi-tech startup Theranica and successfully tested in studies conducted in the United States and Israel, which included Rambam's ongoing research. Currently the device is marketed for sale—by prescription only—in the United States.
Migraines are a medical problem affecting the quality of life of tens of millions of people worldwide daily and without warning. The pharmaceutical market for migraine prevention and treatment generates billions of dollars, and most migraine sufferers want a solution that is fast, convenient, and effective, preferably without having to introduce chemicals into the body. The patented device developed by Rambam is a non-pharmacological solution that precisely meets this requirement. According to studies published in 2017 and 2019, two hours after beginning treatment, 60% of patients reported that severe or moderate pain levels were reduced to slight or no pain – an achievement equivalent to that of migraine medications, but without any side effects. Patients also reported that the device reduces pain more effectively if it is used less than 20 minutes after the onset of the attack.
"It is certainly a great honor to be included in this list," says Professor Yarnitsky, adding, "I hope the device will improve the lives of as many people as possible. For active people who suffer from migraines that impair their quality of life and their daily activities, the possibility of finding relief by discreetly using a small device for 20 to 45 minutes following the onset of a migraine without having to rely on medication is good news."