SaluSTIM — tVNS Therapy Device

Discussion in 'Treatments' started by ady, Mar 26, 2015.

tinnitus forum
    1. ady

      ady Member

      Introducing SaluSTIM®, a new tVNS Therapy device.

      found this. any experience?

      http://salustim.com/
       
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    2. Dennis MacDonald
      Confused

      Dennis MacDonald Member

      Location:
      Bradenton, Fl
      Tinnitus Since:
      20 years
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Did you look closely at the website? There is nothing there but a bunch of fake Latin words that are used as fillers for website building. Maybe it's a new site and shouldn't be live. What exactly is this device?
       
    3. Sjoerd

      Sjoerd Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      09-2013
      This just looks like a cheap Micro Tens device....not worth a second look.

      The whole point of VNS is that it drives plasticity in the brain, but ONLY if it is combined with a sensory input. On a side note....I believe there is no research on the effectiveness of tVNS versus real VNS.
       
    4. Dawn Whinetaker

      Dawn Whinetaker Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2013
      I've been using tVNS treatment along with sound therapy for about 3 weeks now and have had a big reduction in my Tinnitus. It's not entirely gone, but it's significantly less intense than it used to be.

      I bought the device from the Tinnitus Treatment Centre in England and had a friend deliver it to me here in Alaska while they were visiting. They call the device the 'SaluStim'; I think it's a Finnish name as it was developed by the Helsinki Ear Institute. The website link is here.

      This has really helped me so far, and I just wanted to share my experience on here. I'm really excited about it. I discussed it more on another tVNS discussion thread, but wanted to share my experience in a new thread as well.
       
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    5. Lloyd Carter
      Wishful

      Lloyd Carter Member

      Location:
      United States
      Tinnitus Since:
      August 2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced Trauma
    6. RaZaH
      Not amused

      RaZaH Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Reykjavík, Iceland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012/04
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Benzo + loud noise
      I am waiting for a phonecall from these guys , lets see if they feel legit.
       
    7. markoana

      markoana Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2.2013
      That has been here for awhile...but I think that nobody hasn't tried yet...

      I do not know how long it takes results to be shown, but if it is inner 1 month it is worth to try...
       
    8. jeannie
      Stressed

      jeannie Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise-induced, Ear Infection, Medication... Who knows?
      I can't get they don't ship to USA..please keep us informed to all who tries this!
       
    9. RaZaH
      Not amused

      RaZaH Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Reykjavík, Iceland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012/04
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Benzo + loud noise
      I got a call from them, the guy was very nice, not much of a sales pitch, which I like.
      Its sound therapy coupled with Vagus nerve stimulation , He suggested I would start with just the vagus nerve stimulation seeing that my T freq is super high and from there try and introduce the sound therapy part.

      Apparently it has a decent success rate , some people have had full cure, some partial.
      They do not have any concrete statistics.
      I invited him to talk to the moderators of the forum to set up a Q&A.

      Monthly rent is about 40 pounds. 3 month minimum.
       
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    10. RaZaH
      Not amused

      RaZaH Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Reykjavík, Iceland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012/04
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Benzo + loud noise
      @Dawn Whinetaker could you tell more about your T , duration before trying this etc?
       
    11. preslys

      preslys Member

      Location:
      Switzerland
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Finland did it
       
    12. markoana

      markoana Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2.2013
      Part of this procedure is to implant some device in the chest as I remember?
       
    13. Markku
      Inspired

      Markku Director Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Syringing
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    14. Codaz

      Codaz Member

      The website is up. And this is the paper they refer to by Lehtimaki (2013)
       

      Attached Files:

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    15. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      I just talked to Nathan from the Tinnitus Treatment Centre. I enquired about whether it would be useful for me as I have a problem with identifying a single frequency for creation of notched music (I have multiple tones and other sounds as well). Without being too pushy, he seemed to feel it was worth a try using the tVNS anyway. I seem to remember that Microtransponder's sound therapy is just two tones rather than notched music, so it seems that my difficulty with matching a single tone might not be fatal (I hope).

      I also enquired about sleep apnea, which the Wikipedia article on VNS lists as a side effect of the implanted VNS. Nathan said that he had not encountered this as a side effect of the tVNS that they sell, and even seemed to think that the treatment was beneficial for sleep apnea.

      Although they link to the Audionotch frequency finder to identify your tinnitus tone, the way they provide sound therapy to customers is that the customer submits 10 songs to TTC and they manually notch them for you. Despite the professional looking website, reading between the lines I get the impression that this is a very small operation. It would not surprise me if Nathan is the only person running the Tinnitus Treatment Centre.

      I signed up for a three month rental of the device, which should cost me £120. It did not seem too much of an outlay considering the number of studies that suggest there might be a chance of it working. I'll see how it goes and will report back here.
       
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    16. RaZaH
      Not amused

      RaZaH Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Reykjavík, Iceland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012/04
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Benzo + loud noise
      Yes, I talked to Nathan as well, similar impression that I got.
       
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    17. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      I think the main thing that really matters is that the tVNS device is effective. It is easy to create notched music or other sound files in Audacity, so we just need to know that the Vagus nerve is actually being stimulated.

      I had a quick search for alternative tVNS units that might be available, and came up with this:

      https://www.nemos.uk.com/device/

      Quite a difference in price. Considering all it seems to do is provide a low current electrical pulse to an electrode, it is probably very cheap to produce. If the Tinnitus Treatment Clinic is just a spare bedroom style operation then that is fine by me - less infrastructure to pay for.
       
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    18. tVNSPatient

      tVNSPatient Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2015
      @dboy I have got the three months rent too. I will be logging my experience here: https://twitter.com/tVNSPatient

      It probably will require to share quite a lot of private information, therefore, I prefer to stay reasonably anonymous.
       
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    19. preslys

      preslys Member

      Location:
      Switzerland
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      I emailed the tinnitus treatement center to ask about any clinical result published and this is their reply:


      Hi Olivier

      Thank you for your email, I really appreciate you writing in and I hope that we will be able to help you.

      The SaluStim is a handheld, portable tVNS device that be operated from your own home or out during your daily activities. A small discreet clip on electrode is placed on the tragus of the outer ear where small microcurrents then stimulate the Vagus Nerve. You can find out more detailed instructions of how to use the device here in our quick start guide.

      The combined treatment methodology currently used by the Tinnitus Treatment Centre (TTC) has been developed based on the research conducted by the Helsinki Ear Institute (HEI) in Finland. This research suggests that Transcutaneous Vagus Nerve Stimulation (tVNS) and Tailored Sound Therapy (tST), when used in conjunction, can reduce a patient's tinnitus and tinnitus associated stress. Further reading and various publications on our treatment can be found here.

      We do offer our treatment to Switzerland, there is just an additional charge of £25 for international tracked postage.

      If you have any other questions about the treatment I will be happy to answer, or if you would like to know how to order I can send you a link to our order page.

      Best,
      Nathan

      www.tinnitustreatmentcentre.com
      020 3695 8735
       
    20. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      That's great, I'll look forward to comparing notes. My first problem is identifying a frequency for the sound stimulation, I seem to have several tones and narrow band noise, so I'm not sure a one octave notch will be OK for me. Also my case is slightly complicated by a spike/possible t increase that started about 5-6 weeks ago and has not fully settled down yet. I described it earlier today here:

      https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/should-i-go-to-a-rock-concert.11417/#post-140308

      @preslys, you gonna join us? I have read some small scale studies on tVNS and tinnitus most of which I think can be accessed via the publications page on their website. Might not be specific to this device, but I assume the device to be the same as used by the Helsinki Ear Institute, which I assume (again) to be a reputable body. Maybe I should not assume too much... @Markku, do you know much about the HEI?
       
    21. RicoS
      Confused

      RicoS Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Netherlands
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Stress or Acoustic trauma
      I ordered it and will let everybody know if it has good results. The renting price is doable so I can at least try it.
      Will post in the coming weeks when I have it.
       
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    22. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      I got mine. Here are some initial observations:

      1 The instructions advise to use an intensity of 5-8. The machine goes up to 120. I'm not sure how those numbers relate to mA. I could feel the effect starting at about 15 - like little pin pricks. So at the recommended levels I would not actually feel the stimulation consciously.

      2 The clip that goes on to the tragus slips off mine quite easily. I will need to be fairly stationary while using it.

      3 The device has two channels - i.e. it can control 2 separate pairs of electrodes. But it is only safe to stimulate the vagus via the left ear, not the right. So one channel is redundant. @ChrisJ wondered whether this was just a TENS unit renamed, and initial observations seem not incompatible with this. The frequency can go up to 150Hz, whereas tVNS for tinnitus seems to be usually done at 25Hz. With the observation made above about how high the 'intensity' can go it seems probable this unit is not purpose designed to provide tVNS specifically for tinnitus. Please note I am being careful not to say that this is just a TENS machine with earclip electrodes, because I just do not know for sure at this stage.
      4 If this is just a TENS machine as ChrisJ wonders then this therapy would effectively be very cheap for people to DIY, along with notched music or sounds that you can make for free in Audacity. Again, I am not saying this is definitely the case, but I am wondering.

      http://www.notchtherapy.com/
       
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    23. Markku
      Inspired

      Markku Director Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Syringing
      Below are pictures of SaluStim:
      salustim-tvns-tinnitus-front.png

      salustim-tvns-tinnitus-open.jpg


      Compare those to:

      http://www.naturesgatetens.com/best...ty-childbirth-pregnancy-rehabilitation/itens/

      protens-front.jpg

      protens-open.jpg



      To me they look pretty much identical, with some branding added (front panel sticker and stickers as descriptions for the buttons) onto the SaluStim.

      Now I am not saying they are the same device, but to me it looks like it might be a possibility.


      Addendum:

      http://www.littleangels.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/tens.htm
      http://tens.com.au/product/mt11-tens/

      It seems this same-looking machine is sold under multiple brands. At different price points.
       
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    24. RaZaH
      Not amused

      RaZaH Member Benefactor Team Tech

      Location:
      Reykjavík, Iceland
      Tinnitus Since:
      2012/04
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Benzo + loud noise
      Man...T has given me massive trust issues :)
       
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    25. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      If this is a TENS unit with an earclip electrode then the question that remains is whether stimulating the vagus nerve via the left tragus with an earclip electrode attached to a TENS unit is effective? Is that really all there is to tVNS, considering that Cerbomed want to sell people tVNS units for 2487 gbp??
       
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    26. Steve H
      Creative

      Steve H Director Staff Benefactor Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Location:
      York, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Flu, Noise-induced, Jaw trauma
      This is all pretty cool, I'm sure that we can try a few different methods of auditory stimulation too.

      As well as notching music I can make files that play tones all up and down the frequency spectrum in different ways. I have a few that I'm working on at the moment that quieten my T so paired with TENS it could be an interesting experiment.

      So do you all think that we can modify any TENS machine with ear clips to do the same? (just saw your message @dboy - if it works we can make a very low cost unit here)
       
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    27. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      Yes, I wondered whether trying the ACRN with the tVNS would be worthwhile. Although I didn't get anywhere with ACRN on its own a couple of years ago when I tried.

      My big problem is I am not good at identifying a frequency. My t seems quite complex and I really struggle with matching to a pure tone. At various times I've convinced myself it is centred at anything from 4kHz to 10kHz. My audiogram shows a dip around 4kHz and no loss at 8kHz, although 8kHz is what I've most often come up with as my main t frequency. I'm not sure how much I trust the audiogram though, they seem quite imprecise.

      Any thoughts or suggestions gratefully received. :)
       
    28. Steve H
      Creative

      Steve H Director Staff Benefactor Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Location:
      York, UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      2003
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Flu, Noise-induced, Jaw trauma
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    29. dboy
      Jaded

      dboy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/2007 & 8/2013
      I wonder if anyone here has any links to any researcher or other person who has used tVNS and could confirm that the characteristics of the signal sent to the electrode are compatible with TENS? It should not be a complicated comparison. Then we would be able to say for sure whether it was safe for people to experiment with this.

      Thanks for that link Steve, I hadn't seen those files before so will give it a try.

      Edit: Regarding the signal comparison, the parameters available for adjustment are the same for TENS and tVNS: frequency, pulse width and intensity (current). I believe a TENS unit can be adjusted to the settings advised for tVNS. It seems straightforward, but my cautious nature wants to be sure, since getting it wrong might be bad for someone's health.
       
    30. Markku
      Inspired

      Markku Director Staff Benefactor Hall of Fame Team Trobalt Team Tech Team Awareness Team Research

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2010
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Syringing
      http://www.researchgate.net/publica...thy_Humans_Reduces_Sympathetic_Nerve_Activity

      tVNS was performed using a Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) device (V-TENS Plus, Body Clock Health Care Ltd, UK) with modified surface electrodes. Electrodes were placed on the inner and outer surface of the tragus of the ear.

      For what it's worth...
       
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