My Experience with the Transforma Procedure – A Neurostimulation Device (Part 1)

By Amanda

In 2012, my husband and I decided to turn to the Transforma Procedure performed by Dr. Jack Chapman and Advanced Migraine Relief because everything else we had attempted to try for my migraine relief failed to provide any relief for me.

They had an established process that included attending a seminar and having an initial evaluation performed by Dr. Jack Chapman at his Pain Management Clinic in Houston, Texas. If a patient meets the requirements by the doctor’s standards, his office starts the insurance certification for the pre-trial procedure. Once the insurance gives the approval, the patient can have the trial procedure done. If the trial procedure is a success for the patient, the doctor’s office does more insurance approval work to get the permanent procedure approved, and the patient has the procedure and the follow up. Then you tell your story about the wonderful success it all was!

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(Above: Diagram of the Transforma Procedure placement, via PRWeb).

Their version of a perfect candidate would be somebody who has multiple migraines a month to the extent that they have more migraine days in a month than not for at least six months. Their migraines need to extremely interfere with and limit their everyday life and work. Additionally, they must have tried other treatments that were ineffective for managing their migraines.

The technology behind the Transforma Procedure’s Neurostimulation Device is an implantable pulse and battery, which is about the size of a silver dollar. There are implantable electrodes that consists of four leads and sixteen electrodes. There is an external program device that a programmer uses to give the user different options to choose between in order for you to try to find the best option to manage your pain.

 

The results that Advanced Migraine claimed during their seminar definitely made the procedure seem like the cure everybody was needing for their chronic migraines. In their slide show, they stated that there should be an 80 – 99% reduction in the frequency and severity of migraines and that the stimulator should completely stop or at the very least greatly reduce the need for previous abortive and pain medications.

Additionally, they added that there should be fewer visits to the hospital emergency rooms and the doctor offices for migraine relief. All of this would in turn allow the patient to return to living a normal life.

The Trial Procedure involves some IV sedation and a 30 minute out-patient procedure. The leads go just under the skin and would be on the outside and connect to an external battery and a handheld controller. The trial procedure lasts for 5 – 7 days, depending on the patient’s specific situation. At the seminar they say that 80% of trial patients get the permanent procedure done (19 out of 20).

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There is a 2-8 week interval between the trial procedure and the permanent procedure. The electrodes and battery get implanted during the procedure. The lead wires get connected to the battery and then the battery can be turned on.

Once the signal is tuned for the device, the individual can start to get relief. After the permanent procedure, there is a one night hospital stay mostly because of pain medications for wounds and then a follow up about 8-10 days to view wounds and check the programming signal.

The battery is supposed to last a minimum of 10 years depending on program use and settings. Unfortunately, it is not MRI compatible. The healing is for the first 6 weeks, but then there are no physical limits.

As I went through the process of having the Transforma Procedure, both myself and my husband had different reactions and experiences. We both wrote about how we felt, the reality of having surgery for migraine relief, and what it’s like to be patient and caregiver. We will share those separate blogs soon.

(To Be Continued…)

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