Non-opioid treatment option for chronic pain
August 8, 2018
BRAMPTON, Ont. – Medtronic of Canada Ltd. announced it has received a licence from Health Canada for its Intellis platform, which includes the world’s smallest implantable spinal cord stimulator (SCS) for the management of certain types of chronic intractable pain.
Chronic pain is a debilitating condition that can negatively impact all aspects of a person’s life – relationships, work productivity and activities of daily living – yet it remains under-recognized and undertreated.
Given the national crisis involving opioid abuse, it is more important than ever for Canadians suffering from chronic pain to have access to new non-opioid treatment options.
“Persistent neuropathic pain is challenging to treat, and our goal should be to restore our patient’s mobility and improve their quality of life with effective long-term pain relief,” said Sean Christie, M.D., associate professor and director of research at Dalhousie University.
“Considering the recommendations of Choosing Wisely Canada, it’s more important than ever to find effective, long-term, non-opioid solutions. The availability of the Intellis spinal cord stimulator offers new possibilities for some patients struggling with debilitating pain.”
Six million people in Canada report that they have a form of chronic pain. Back problems are among the most common chronic conditions, with an estimated 30 percent of the patients that undergo lumbosacral spine procedures developing chronic intractable pain.
Medtronic neurostimulation therapy for chronic pain uses an SCS system, which is a medical device placed under a patient’s skin to deliver mild electrical impulses through a lead implanted in the epidural space to block pain signals from going to the brain.
Neurostimulation has been proven to provide effective long-term pain relief and improve quality of life, in addition to being a treatment option for patients interested in trying a non-drug alternative.
“Chronic pain affects up to 19 percent of Canadians,” said Peter Tomashewski, senior director for Restorative Therapies at Medtronic Canada. “Intellis is an important innovation in the field of SCS for both physicians and patients alike. Transformative features and standardized guidance create a balanced approach enabling us to meet our goal of helping people with chronic pain have more freedom to do the things they love.”
About the Intellis Platform
The Intellis platform includes the world’s smallest implantable SCS neurostimulator and offers important patient benefits, including improving patient-physician communication by tracking and sharing daily activities such as body positions and therapy usage. This level of traceability can optimize treatment by providing physicians with an objective look at mobility and progress. The system also addresses a common patient complaint: the daily or weekly recharge burden. With Medtronic’s proprietary Overdrive battery technology, the Intellis platform can be fully recharged in approximately one hour and is optimized for meeting the energy demands of high-dose (HD) therapy options offered in the Evolve Workflow. The Intellis platform also allows broad access for MRI diagnostic imaging of most SCS systems. This is significant because studies show approximately 82 percent of patients implanted with an SCS system are expected to need an MRI within five years of receiving the implant. The platform also has AdaptiveStim technology which automatically adjusts to deliver the right dose to the right location as the pain target shifts based on body position.
About Medtronic Canada
Proud to celebrate 50 years in Canada in 2018, Medtronic Canada (www.medtronic.ca), headquartered in Brampton, Ontario, is a subsidiary of Medtronic plc, which is one of the world’s largest medical technology, services and solutions companies – alleviating pain, restoring health and extending life for millions of people around the world. Medtronic employs more than 1,100 people in Canada, serving physicians, hospitals and patients across the country. The company is focused on collaborating with stakeholders around the world to take healthcare Further, Together.