Nerve Block for Pain

Nerve Conduction Block Utilizing High Frequency Alternating Current (HFAC)


Our unique approach to pain suppression is to utilize a novel electrical current waveform delivered near the nerve. Unlike most drug treatments, this method is directed to the specific nerve(s) and has no systemic effects. Early experimental results show that the effect can be instantaneously started, providing complete pain blockage for the nerve to which it is directed. The effect is reversible within milliseconds, restoring completely normal nerve activity. The unique features of this method may be particularly applicable to acute post-operative pain and to cancer pain.

About This Study

Purpose: The goal of this program is to develop a new method for blocking the conduction of nerve signals on peripheral nerves. We have discovered that high frequency alternating currents (HFAC) can produce a quick-acting and quick-reversing nerve conduction block. This research is currently in the pre-clinical stage.

Study Information: Unwanted or uncoordinated generation of nerve impulses is a major disabling factor in many medical conditions. Uncoordinated motor signals produce spasticity in stroke, cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis, resulting in the inability to make functional movements. Involuntary motor signals in conditions such as tics and choreas produce unwanted movements. Unwanted sensory signals can result in pain generated peripherally. If these impulses could be intercepted along the peripheral nerves over which they travel, then the disabling condition could be reduced or eliminated. The existing methods for treating these conditions are often less than satisfactory. We hypothesize that HFAC block would be an excellent replacement for most neurolytic procedures, and might be a better alternative than pharmacological treatment or chemodenervation for some conditions where a localized or quickly reversible intervention is desired.


Principal Investigators: Kevin Kilgore, Ph.D.,
Niloy Bhadra, M.D., Ph.D.
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