Device to ease pain of opioid detox shows promise at treatment center

Device to ease pain of opioid detox shows promise at treatment center

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WILLISBURG, Ky. (WKYT) -- A device cleared by the FDA for use for acute pain treatment is helping people with a drug addiction get over the initial pain of detox.

The Neuro-Stim System Bridge fits behind the ear and sends electrical feedback to the brain, blocking the pain of detox.

The Isaiah House Recovery Center in Willisburg, Kentucky has been offering the Bridge device since last Fall. So far, they've fitted about 10 patients with the device and have had success.

Isaiah House Marketing Director David Cobb said, "What we see the Bridge device as, is simply a way to get over that initial hump, the pain of detox. Most guys if they leave our program early, they'll leave in that first week because they'll say 'I just can't handle the pain.'"

Frankie Pittman drove from Louisiana to the Isaiah House. "I've been addicted to something my entire life," he said. Pittman had tried to detox once before, and that was it. "I don't want to ever go through it again," he said. "I would have rather died than to go through that again. And I mean that with the most sincerity, too."

Pittman fit the profile to be a candidate for the Bridge. A patient can't come in to rehab with benzodiazepines in their system. So people that take a cocktail of drugs probably won't be able to try the Bridge. "But the guys that put it on, they are extremely successful," Cobb explained.

"It's just knowing something else is out there besides cold turkey," Pittman said.

Video was taken the day Pittman got the Bridge. Within 10 minutes, the majority of his withdrawal symptoms were gone. Within 30 minutes, he said, "This is the difference between night and day. This is something else. I can't believe it. I feel like I can have a conversation with you, smile, laugh. That was not possible twenty minutes ago."

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