Frequently Asked Questions
The newly researched CGRP molecules have been found to be associated with migraines. Four major companies, including Ally and Allergan, are racing to build an injectable CGRP block, potentially in the next two years. We already perform a CGRP block with our SPG treatment.
About 45 million American men and women suffer from chronic migraine disorders.
- U.S. employees take 113 million sick days per year because of migraine.
- Migraine ranks 7th among the world's most disabling medical conditions.
Over 3 million Americans have, on at least one occasion, resorted to emergency services to treat severe headaches. The days in between migraine pain are indeterminate. Patients may not feel the pain, but are not 100% recovered, limiting their participation in work, family, and social life.
Conventional Headache Relief—IT’S NOT WORKING
Here’s another discouraging statistic: Over 60% of patients have given up on their prescription medications. Conventional chronic headache prescriptions such as topiramate and triptan can often cost well over $500 every month. For such expensive treatment, the numerous uncomfortable side effects as well as an overall absence of pain relief mean that the majority of patients need something better. The SphenoCath® procedure differs from conventional headache prescription medications because we treat the pain right at its source with a quick, painless, and minimally invasive SPG blocking technique.
SPG BLOCKS - The Sphenopalatine Ganglion
The sphenopalatine gangling (SPG) is a collection of nerve cells, located at the top of the nasal cavity, outside of the brain. The SPG is critical to CGRP transmission and therefore to migraines, cluster headaches, as well as headaches with mixed symptoms. There are other chemicals, but CGRP is known to be significantly represented in the SPG ganglion.
What is an SPG block?
An SPG block is a procedure that administers medication to the SPG, which modulates nerve impulses to CGRP to provide effective and long-lasting pain relief in most.
If it works so well, why don't more people do it?
The SPG block procedure has been around since the early 1900s. It is an historically effective procedure for the treatment of chronic head pain, but it took the invention of the device to make treatment possible.
THE NEW PROCEDURE AND WHY IT’S BETTER
What makes using the SphenoCath® Medical Device better?
The SphenoCath® Medical Device was awarded a U.S. Patent #8,388,600 in March 2013 as an “Apparatus, System, and Method for Treating Atypical Headaches.” It is an FDA-approved device. Our SPG block procedure is non-invasive and quickly administered with very little or no discomfort for the patient and almost no side effects. We use the FDA-reviewed and patented latex-free, single-use SphenoCath® Medical Device that allows our physicians to swiftly and easily administer medication to the SPG.
Will it hurt?
The procedure is designed to be safe and painless. You may experience minimal or brief discomfort, not pain, when the SphenoCath® Medical Device is inserted into the nose, but it is nothing like the painful needles of Botox. The SphenoCath® Medical Device is small and flexible, making the procedure as comfortable as possible for quick relief.
How long does it take?
It usually only takes five minutes for the physician to administer the Trigeminal Nerve and SPG Nerve Blocks using the SphenoCath® Medical Device. After the procedure, the patient should recline or lie flat for another 10-15 minutes to experience maximum benefit relief.
How well does it work?
In a 50-patient pilot study performed by a board certified physician specialist, when SPG blocks were properly performed, using the new SphenoCath® Medical Device and procedure, the results were very positive:
- Over 74% of the patients experienced complete symptom relief.
- An additional 20% of the patients experienced over 50% relief.
- The remaining 6% did not experience pain relief at all.
Many patients are seeing benefits as long as 3-9 months for "super responders." In the event you have been using migraine medications for a long time, you may need additional procedures. The suggestion is that each treatment may provide longer preventative relief.
What are the associated risks and side effects?
Our procedure has almost no side effects and very low risks and uses simple xylocaine. It is safe enough to use in pregnancy.
Insurance and Cash Pay Options
A medical referral is not necessary.
Medicare and Medicaid are gladly accepted.
Most insurance plans are accepted, and we do the filing for you. We also accept credit cards.