Scrambler Therapy Program
Hopkins Health & Wellness Center
A New Innovation in Neuropathy Treatment
Scrambler therapy is a pain management approach that uses a machine to block the transmission of pain signals by providing non-pain information to nerve fibers that have been receiving pain messages.
The first study on scrambler therapy was published in 2003 by a team of researchers led by Giuseppe Marineo, professor in delta research and development at University of Rome Tor Vergata in Italy. He and colleagues reported that scrambler therapy was effective at reducing pain symptoms in patients with severe, drug-resistant pain from terminal cancer.
The Scrambler Therapy device has since received FDA clearance in the United States for use in patients experiencing:
- Pain from cancer and chemotherapy
- Pain as a result of chronic diseases such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis
- Chronic back and neck pain
- Pain from failed back surgery syndrome
- Phantom limb pain.
How Does Scrambler Therapy Work?
Scrambler Therapy is an electro-cutaneous treatment. Scrambler Therapy provides normal-self, non-pain electrical information via nerves that have been transmitting chronic pain information. Through a process termed plasticity, non-pain information is able to retrain the brain so that it does not ascribe pain to the chronic pain area. The Scrambler Therapy machine looks somewhat like an electrocardiogram machine. Leads are placed on patients, around the areas of chronic pain. Scrambled electrical signals are then sent to the brain that perceives them as normal, non-pain signals. Essentially, the brain is retrained to think that there really is not pain in the area that is being treated. At first, the pain symptoms go into remission for a short period of time, but after approximately 10 sessions, patients will experience continuous remission from pain. Remission will last from 3 to 9 months and when symptoms begin to return they can receive one to two booster treatments of Scrambler Therapy to make the pain go back into remission. Typically, the remission period increases after consecutive booster treatments.
Scramble Therapy Program Description
The Scrambler Therapy Program at Hopkins Health & Wellness Center includes the following:
- Detailed history and review of records
- Neuropathy questionnaire completion and review
- Review treatment contraindications
- Ten 35-minute sessions of Scrambler Therapy scheduled on a daily basis, excluding weekends.
- 30 days of supportive nutritional supplements
What to Expect During Treatments
While in a comfortable seated position, the area of pain/neuropathy is first defined and a set of leads is placed in normal sensation skin sites, close to the area of pain/neuropathy. The electrodes are then turned on with a gradual increase in intensity to a point where the patient is able to feel sensations, short of pain. When successful, the patient reports that the buzzing sensation has replaced an area of pain/neuropathy. This generally occurs within a minute or two. At times, electrodes need to be moved to obtain this sort of success. Sometimes, several sets of electrodes are needed to cover the area of discomfort. The scrambler machine stays on for about 30 minutes following successful electrode placements. The electricity is then turned off and the patient commonly reports that the pain/tingling is markedly improved. After one treatment, the benefit is often relatively short-lived, lasting for minutes to hours. With repetitive days of treatment (standardly up to 10 treatments, although stopped earlier if the problem goes away completely and lasts overnight), the period of benefit increases until it lasts for a 48 hours. This is typically a sign of remission. The benefit largely persists for 3 to 9 months. Some patients relapse and can be successfully retreated, oftentimes only needing an additional 1-2 sessions. Below is the typical Scrambler Therapy Remission Curve:
“I’ve struggled with severe neuropathy in my legs and feet for the last eight years. Countless medications, pain pumps, neuro-stimulators that gave no relief. When I started Scrambler Therapy, I had a hard time accepting that my symptoms had suddenly decreased, but over the course of the next couple treatments, I came to realize that I had found away to get away from the neuropathy. Scrambler Therapy gave me my life back.”– Bob
Scrambler Therapy has given me relief from back and leg pain like nothing else. After the second session, I Golfed for the first time in years without pain in my back and legs.”- Jeff
“The relentless burning in my face, feet and hands decreased with the first treatment. And when I stood up I could balance for the first time in two years.”- Brenda
“Had no hope of getting relief from the diabetic neuropathy in my feet. Now the pain, burning and sensitivity is gone. Amazing.” -Bill
“After my second session of Scrambler Therapy, I was at home and got up from a chair and got halfway across a room before I realized what I was doing. I Didn’t have any pain. I Didn’t struggle. I Didn’t grab my cane. I Didn’t think that was ever going to be possible again in my life.”- Tom
Scrambler Therapy Program Cost
The initial evaluation and program set-up costs $250. The cost of the Scrambler Therapy program is $3,250. The program includes 30 days of supportive nutritional supplements and ten 35-minute sessions of Scrambler Therapy. Additional sessions and booster sessions of Scrambler therapy are $300/session. After the initial evaluation and program set-up, patients receive the first session of Scrambler therapy at no charge. $3,250 is due in full before the second treatment. Patients who wish to seek reimbursement from their personal health insurance or health savings account are provided with a letter of medical necessity.
Setting Up Your First Appointment
If you wish to set up an initial evaluation to see if you’re a candidate for Scrambler Therapy, Call 952-933-5085 and request a Scrambler Therapy evaluation. Please bring any medical records you have that relate to your neuropathy or recent healthcare conditions.