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Local Boston Scientific working on back pain

Nationally, the company is in trials to treat Parkinson’s

Posted: April 16, 2013 2:00 a.m.
Updated: April 16, 2013 2:00 a.m.

Employees of Boston Scientific in Valencia work on manufacturing the biomed firm's spinal cord stimulator, which helps manage chronic back pain.

 

Boston Scientific received U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval last week for its second generation Precision Spectra Spinal Cord Stimulator System, which controls pain.

On Monday the biomed company announced it acquired a device which can secure the leads for the spinal cord system, which is implantable.

The spinal cord stimulator, manufactured at the Valencia location, is designed to manage chronic pain by delivering electrical pulses from an implantable pulse generator to wire leads that lay just on top of the spine.

The system avoids invasive, costly, painful surgeries for patients which may or may not help a patient, said a spokesman for the company.

The electrical pulse system masks pain signals traveling to the brain.

The newest version of the spinal cord device has increased lead capacity up to 32 from 16, and allows up to four ports, giving a doctor the maximum flexibility when treating a patient, said Maulik Nanavaty, Ph.D. and president of the Neuromodulation business unit at Santa Clarita’s Boston Scientific.

The device Boston Scientific recently purchased – the fiXate Tissue Band – a suturing device that allows a surgeon to quickly and simply secure the spinal cord stimulator leads to the tissue surrounding the system. Tests showed the device allows a doctor to place a suture in under one minute.

When Boston Scientific worked on the second generation of its spinal cord stimulator, the company looked very specifically at how to give maximum pain relief, Nanavaty said.

The new system also puts the control of managing pain into the hands of doctors and patients, he said.

Next on the horizon for the biomed company is deep brain therapy, used to treat patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease, Nanavaty said. The therapy helps patients who have been severely debilitated by tremors. Already in use in Europe, the device is just launching clinical trials in the U.S. for approval.

“It’s a different device but has some of the same mechanics and electronic components as the spinal cord stimulator. Only the leads and programming are different, Nanavaty said.

 

 

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