Sooma Pain Therapy - Fast and effective opioid-free pain relief
Prescribed by professionals, used at home.
Sooma Pain Therapy
Sooma Pain Therapy is an effective noninvasive brain stimulation treatment indicated for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Neuropathic pain. It uses a technique called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), where a small portable medical device delivers electrical current to the areas of the brain responsible for sensory and affective pain processing. The therapy is drug-free, and can be used either as a first-line of treatment, or to bring additive effects to other forms of treatment. It is prescribed by a medical professional, but can easily be self-administered by patients themselves at their own home to the benefit of both the patient and the clinic.
What is tDCS?
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a noninvasive neuromodulation technique used to treat various psychiatric and neurological disorders. A weak electrical current is delivered from a portable device to targeted areas of the brain. This causes polarity-dependent changes in the electrical signalling of the brain.
In treating pain, the positive current (excitatory stimulation) is delivered to the primary motor area, and the negative current (inhibitory stimulation) is delivered to the contralateral supraorbital area. In one-sided peripheral pain, the polarity is determined based on the pain location.
The goal is to enhance communication between different brain areas that are responsible for pain processing and to support the function of descending inhibitory pain pathways.
Why treat pain with tDCS?
The effects of tDCS have been studied for at least three decades. The most recent meta-analysis (N = 1007) of tDCS in various pain conditions showed that tDCS had a superior effect compared to sham tDCS, reducing chronic pain with a moderate effect size.
The international evidence-based guidelines (2020) gives the following recommendations for tDCS in pain management:
- Level B: Fibromyalgia
- Level B: Neuropathic pain
- Level B: Migraine
- Level B Post-operative acute pain
A safety review based on over 40,000 stimulation sessions concluded tDCS to be a safe treatment method, also when used in the treatment of adolescent or elderly patients.
To access the referenced publications and other scientific materials, head over to our Knowledge Centre.
A Sooma Pain Therapy session lasts for 20 minutes and is conducted daily for 2 weeks. The treatment uses a 2mA current and stays level throughout the session aside from a short ramp-up and ramp-down at the start and end of the session. When 20 minutes have passed, the device ends the session automatically.
Medical professionals can follow the progress of home-based patients via our remote monitoring platform Sooma Online. Patients use a mobile application to record mood and health data. The data is synchronised to the cloud and can be accessed by the medical professional via an internet browser.
See how it works
Steps to getting started with Sooma Depression Therapy
Contact us, and our team will be happy to provide the correct solution for your needs. We will help you to understand how your patients will benefit from tDCS as a treatment.
We work together with a wide network of distributors to ensure that you receive equipment in a timely manner, and can get onsite support in your local language
We will train all our customers how to conduct Sooma therapies. This is of paramount importance to achieve the optimal treatment results. You’ll be trained in e.g.:
1. Background of the therapy
2. How to pick correct patients for the therapy
3. How to select and adjust the treatment protocol
4. How to use the system, and teach patients to use it
Step 1: Preparations before treatment
Meet with the patient and gather the relevant medical information. Make sure that the patient is eligible for the treatment, and determine the patient’s baseline depression score using the depression scale of your choice (for example BDI, HAMD, MADRS). Go through the loaner agreement and make sure the patient has signed, then lend the device and accessories to the patient. If treatment is done 100% remotely, the first meeting can be done over video, after which the equipment can be picked up by the patient, or shipped.
Step 2: Starting treatment
Normally, the first treatment session is conducted in the clinic and administered by a nurse. Here, the nurse may also instructs the patient on how to self-administer the treatment when at home. Make sure the patient has relevant instructions and materials for the treatment period (these are provided by Sooma). If the treatment is done 100% remotely, then ideally instruct and observe the patient's preparation and self-administration of the first treatment session over a video call in order to make sure that they are doing it correctly.
Step 3: During treatment
During the treatment period, we recommend having weekly phone calls or texts with the patient to follow-up on their progress and compliance. At the end of the treatment period, the patient normally comes back to the clinic to have their results evaluated by their doctor. Assess their results, and decide on whether to continue the treatment. If yes, supply them with more disposables, if no, have them return the equipment. If treatment is done 100% remotely, we recommend calling the patient at the end of the treatment period to evaluate their results over phone or video.
For more detailed steps and a 100% remote, COVID-proof, implementation, visit this post. Note that these steps in these post are written for Sooma Depression Therapy, but they can be tailored for Sooma Pain Therapy as well.
What is tDCS and what happens in the brain?
To read more about tDCS, visit this BLOGPOST.
How does this differ from TENS?
TENS is used to stimulate peripheral nerves and is normally contraindicated for use in the head area. In tDCS, the electrical current type, it's amplitude and dosing is completely different from TENS. Moreover, tDCS has been studied and proven safe when used in the head area.
Are there any contraindications?
While Sooma Pain Therapy is safe when used correctly, there are specific risk groups where caution should be used. If the patient has metal within the skull or an implanted life-supporting medical device in the body, the therapy should not be used. Further, if the skin under the electrodes is broken or diseased, the stimulation should not be applied.
What about non-chronic pain conditions?
In most studies, tDCS has only been used for chronic pain, as the brain is often a significant contributor in those conditions. There is some evidence of tDCS use for acute postoperative pain, but it is still in the research stages.
Where can I read more?
We have collected relevant high-quality studies to our Knowledge Centre. If you have a specific question you'd like to read more on, please contact us and we'll help you find the correct resource. You may also subscribe to our newsletter (see footer) in order to get updates on the most recent science on the field.
Please note that Sooma tDCS is sold only to medical professionals. If you are a patient wishing to receive tDCS treatment, please inquire your physician about the possibility or fill out our contact form and we can help you find a provider.