Fisher Wallace Stimulator

Discussion in 'Alternative Treatments and Research' started by sworthi245, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. sworthi245
    Balanced

    sworthi245 Member

    Location:
    United States, Northwest Georgia
    Tinnitus Since:
    12/02/12
    I have been scouring the internet since giving myself my T, and came across the Fisher Wallace Stimulator in an ad that popped up. The device is an electronic stimulator which is FDA approved for the treatment of depression, insomnia, anxiety, and pain (it is NOT approved for T). Sounds similar of the side effects of T. Info available at:

    www.fisherwallace.com

    This electronic stimulator device sounds very much like the process or device being trialed in the UK, in which some members are participating. The device delivers an electrical current, which is passed into the brain using moistened electrodes. The device can be set to different levels of stimulation. The company claims no side effects for approved conditions. Obtaining a device sounds easy, a prescription is required from a practitioner, therapist, etc. Runs around $695 (US).

    Has anyone tried this for their T? I saw another forum where users were discussing how to make their own rather than paying for the device. My fear is that I would try it, and it would make my T worse without knowing the right frequency, etc. Since there is no help from the medical community for T, I could be worse off than I am today.

    Your input will be appreciated.

    Susan W.
     
  2. Louise

    Louise Member Benefactor

    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK
    Tinnitus Since:
    29/06/2012
    I've just speed read this. Does it say where its stimulating? Is it similar to the Vagus Nerve stimulator?

    I'm not sure anything like this is currently being trialled in the UK? The UK trials of the ANM device are on-going but that's sound therapy.

    Can anyone else comment?
     
  3. mick

    mick Member Benefactor

    Location:
    USA
    Tinnitus Since:
    11/2012
    Sounds interesting. I remember reading about some tinnitus study or treatment where hey did something similar except patients ears were filled with saline solutionand inserted the electrodes in the liquid so that the current flowed through the ears. So this sounds similar. I vaguely remember that the treatment was shown to be somewhat helpful. It required matching the frequency of the electrical current to the patient's tinnitus. I'll try to find that study/treatment info again and will post it if I do.
     
  4. erik
    Surfing

    erik Manager Staff Benefactor

    Location:
    Washington State
    Tinnitus Since:
    04/15/2012
    Cause:
    My Own Stupidity
    I studied this a while back. The real problem I saw is that there was no double blind controlled study on this specific device only cited similar devices/ treatments. You also need a prescription which is not all that unusual for a medical device but you can get one for this device from them by talking with a physician over the phone --seems a bit odd.
     
  5. calin
    Inspired

    calin Member Benefactor

    Tinnitus Since:
    Oct 2011
    Found this about the insurance....

    Insurance Payment & Reimbursement

    We offer Medicare patients a $100 discount on the purchase of a Fisher Wallace Stimulator.
    Many private insurance companies, such as Aetna, Cigna and Blue Cross will reimburse the purchase of a Fisher Wallace Stimulator when it is prescribed for the treatment of pain using the code E0720NU. When the device is authorized only for the treatment of depression, anxiety or insomnia, the reimbursement rate decreases significantly - when the device is authorized for depression / anxiety / insomnia AND pain, the patient will be able to have the device reimbursed more easily.
    Fisher Wallace Laboratories does not process reimbursement paperwork on behalf of its customers, but will assist customers during the process. The following information is often required by insurance companies to process a reimbursement (or payment) request:
     
  6. calin
    Inspired

    calin Member Benefactor

    Tinnitus Since:
    Oct 2011
    This sounds interesting. Wonder if the $695 is still required if the nurse or doc prescribes it.

    I saw the instruction booklet and it is just a headband. I thought the electrodes would be lots of wires and sticky tabs on the head/hair.
     
  7. calin
    Inspired

    calin Member Benefactor

    Tinnitus Since:
    Oct 2011
    Thanks Susan for that video.

    I would be interested in your far infrared skull cap. I use a far infrared for body parts... inflammation, strains, etc. Are you using this for tinnitus treatment?
     
  8. sworthi245
    Balanced

    sworthi245 Member

    Location:
    United States, Northwest Georgia
    Tinnitus Since:
    12/02/12
    Sorry for the sporadic responses. I have a hard time getting to post, but I read a lot of what everyone is posting. I found a link to a physician who claims he treated a patient (his mother) with the stimulator. The video link is:

    Chronic Pain and Insomnia - Part 8 of 10


    Also, good article from Harvard Med School for non-invasive electrical brain stimulation, which is part of the research for the stimulator. The link to the 24-page article is:

    http://www.fisherwallace.com/uploads/Harvard_Medical_School_Research.pdf

    The more I read about hearing, it's core functionality, and causes of tinnitus, it appears to be fluid based, which may be why the electrical stimulation helps. It resets the ion balance of the fluid in the inner ear, which is referenced in the information from Washington University Hearing Lab. If you read their research about the fluid in the ear, it is very delicate, and if disturbed, will not go back in balance without heat or electrical stimulation. See the info at:

    http://oto2.wustl.edu/cochlea/intro0.htm
    Read and make your own interpretation. The link has been referenced before, but the attention was focused on the ear structure and not the fluids in the ear. Read their research about ion balance and the fluids of the cochlea. You may need a molecular biologist to interpret though...

    Will post more later. I need to open a discussion on my far infrared skull cap. I have discussed with Louise, but would to have others see what they think. Thanks for all the great info!

    Susan W.
     
  9. erik
    Surfing

    erik Manager Staff Benefactor

    Location:
    Washington State
    Tinnitus Since:
    04/15/2012
    Cause:
    My Own Stupidity
    The Harvard research is not on this specifically on this device but devices of this type in general.

    Of particular note from the article:

    but results from various groups are often mixed, and many studies are limited by small sample sizes and experimental design.

    Despite the differing proposed mechanisms of action, preliminary small studies suggest that both techniques show promising results and should be explored further. Future studies should target an understanding of the mechanisms or neurophysiology of these methods of neuromodulation in addition to well-controlled and well-designed clinical studies also addressing the mechanisms of action.
     
  10. sworthi245
    Balanced

    sworthi245 Member

    Location:
    United States, Northwest Georgia
    Tinnitus Since:
    12/02/12
    I have read and researched all types of treatments for T. I ran across an article about low level light therapy (LLLT) being tested in a small trial with some success. I started researching different types of LLLT and came across far infrared. Of course I am always looking for the most cost effective of anything, so dig, dig, dig...

    I came across a company at www.firheals.com. They sell all types of clothing manufactured from (patented) yarn that has some type of ceramics woven into the material. It supposedly emits very low level far infrared. So, ordered the cap ($37.00 US) and have been wearing it when I get home every since. I don't know that it actually has done anything. Maybe it is psychological, maybe because it is warm. But, it seems to comfort my head and ears. The late day buzz seems to go down some. Not gone, but down. Unfortunately, because it is too big and does not fit close to my head, I have to put a beanie over it to make it fit down on my head. My husband says I am going to grow hair like Stalin... Like I said, it is comforting and helps me.

    I can't sleep in the cap because of how it is made. It is a little too big, and moves around when I sleep. I do keep it in the bed, wear it over my eyes, and wad it up under my ear. Wadded up it seems to be a little warmer, and seems to stop the buzz in my ear after a few minutes. It seems to do much better when sandwiched between the skin on my hand and my ear. Again, I think it makes it warmer.

    So, as nutty as I am, I am willing to try anything not harmful, too invasive, or overly expensive. (I also bought a far infrared hair dryer off of Ebay.)

    Hope it comforts someone else...
     
  11. sworthi245
    Balanced

    sworthi245 Member

    Location:
    United States, Northwest Georgia
    Tinnitus Since:
    12/02/12
    I replied to your post, but not directly. I don't think I responded properly to your inquiry. Please look at the Discussion for what I posted. Sorry, will reply directly next time.

    Susan W.
     
  12. sworthi245
    Balanced

    sworthi245 Member

    Location:
    United States, Northwest Georgia
    Tinnitus Since:
    12/02/12
    I am wearing my FIR cap as I type. I bought it specifically because of my T. Buzzing some tonight, but not the worst. Again, it does seem to be soothing.

    The odd thing about FIR is the energy from it excites cells and causes them to vibrate. You would not think that would be soothing with T. Again, it could be the warmth from the cap that makes my head feel a little better.

    Again, not sure if it would soothe anyone else.
     
  13. calin
    Inspired

    calin Member Benefactor

    Tinnitus Since:
    Oct 2011
    Interesting!

    Are you using it specifically for T?
     
  14. sworthi245
    Balanced

    sworthi245 Member

    Location:
    United States, Northwest Georgia
    Tinnitus Since:
    12/02/12
    I did buy it specifically for T. Being new to T, I have no preconceived notions about what to do for it. I am doing what I feel works for me each day.

    As you know, at this point, the medical community offers little. I have been digging through all types of information trying to help myself. The low level light therapies are growing in scope for all types of medical issues, and this is not harmful or invasive. The original post about the stimulator is scary because I consider it to be invasive in a way that I cannot control. I could actually harm myself in an irreversible way. The cap is mild, and like I said, seems to soothe my head at the end of the day. I wear it for 5 to 6 hours a day. They have a pillow case the I am considering but it is $67 US.

    I am also considering some type of magnetic therapy. Looking for a high powered cheap wrap big enough to go around my head. I will let you know what I find...
     
  15. calin
    Inspired

    calin Member Benefactor

    Tinnitus Since:
    Oct 2011
    I just saw your link on the Balding thread. Thanks

    Give us some information on what you find for the magnetic therapy... ok?!
     
  16. Golly
    Bookworm

    Golly Member Benefactor

    Location:
    New York City
    Tinnitus Since:
    01/2011
    According to the company website, "the Fisher Wallace Stimulator restores sleep and improves mood by using patented radio frequencies to gently stimulate the brain's production of serotonin, beta-endorphin and other key neurochemicals."

    To my knowledge, the Fisher Wallace Stimulator has not yet been used to treat tinnitus. However, my doctor tells me that he has had some success with this device in treating patients suffering from depression. Some time ago, he suggested I try it to treat my tinnitus. As I recall, the price tag was up near $700, so I declined. However, given that tinnitus might derive from neurochemical imbalances, it is a possible treatment avenue.

    I just thought I would put it out there for anyone interested. (Of course, discuss with your doctor before trying!)

    -Golly
     
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  17. mick

    mick Member Benefactor

    Location:
    USA
    Tinnitus Since:
    11/2012
    I looked into it, but chose not to try it at this time because of the price tag and the fact that there was no published info on it being used for tinnitus. I believe the price is fully refundable if you are unsatisfied provided you return it with in x days of purchase. You do need a doctors prescription.

    I believe the Fisher-Wallace stimulator falls into a category of devices called TDCSs - Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation devices. I think there is a small university based tinnitus study going on somewhere in Great Britain on such devices and that more than one TT member has participated in that study. I don't know if any results are out yet. See this thread: http://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads...eatments-rtms-tdcs-tacs.326/page-2#post-12240
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. jazz
    No Mood

    jazz Member Staff Benefactor Team Trobalt

    Tinnitus Since:
    8/2012
    Cause:
    eardrum rupture from virus; barotrauma from ETD
    Golly Thanks for submitting this post. I believe at-home neuromodulation devices will be used by many in the near future. Besides the device you cite above, there is currently a home TMS unit approved in the UK. But it's approved only for migraines.

    Though I know tinnitus will be effectively treated in the near future, the technological approaches--like those just cited along with Vagus Nerve Stimulation--are on the fast track. In part, I believe the brain is more amenable to electrical, radio, and magnetic solutions than to pharmaceutical ones. But, I also believe, most people would prefer a pharmaceutical solution, including myself.

    Here's the link to the migraine TMS device. I know a few people with migraines and can't wait until this is approved in the US:

    http://www.eneura.com/index.html
     
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