VR treatment for chronic pain gets FDA authorization

The Food and Medication Management authorized an online reality system as a prescription therapy for persistent neck and pain in the back, the company announced today. The treatment, called EaseVRx, joins the list of electronic therapeutics removed by the company over the previous couple of years.

EaseVRx consists of a VR headset and a gadget that amplifies the sound of the user's breath to assist in taking a breath exercises. It uses concepts from cognitive behavior modification, which aims to assist individuals acknowledge and understand various thought patterns and feelings. The program addresses discomfort through leisure, interruption, and improved understanding of interior indicates, the FDA said in its declaration.

The FDA authorized EaseVRx based upon information from an eight-week study in 179 individuals with reduced neck and pain in the back that had lasted 6 months or much longer. Fifty percent used the EaseVRx program and fifty percent took part in another, two-dimensional online reality program that didn't use cognitive behavior modification techniques. About two-thirds of individuals using EaseVRx said they had greater than 30 percent decrease suffering, while just 41 percent of the control team had a comparable decrease. The decreased discomfort lasted for up to 3 months after the study for individuals in the EaseVRx team but except the control team.

The VR system could be an alternative option to opioid medications for neck and pain in the back, Christopher Loftus, acting supervisor of the Workplace of Neurological and Physical Medication Devices at the FDA, said in a declaration. Research shows that psychological approaches can work therapies for persistent discomfort for some individuals, and advocates stress that targeting those elements to discomfort does not imply the discomfort is any much less real. Still, cognitive behavior modification for discomfort is sometimes questionable and initiatives to incorporate it right into standard treatment have been consulted with concerns that it'll be used as a reason to draw individuals off needed medications.

EaseVRx was developed by the company AppliedVR, which is also testing its system as a therapy for fibromyalgia discomfort, shed discomforts, or discomfort throughout giving birth.

Its clearance for neck and pain in the back happens a month after the FDA approved another VR therapy, used to treat an aesthetic condition in children. The company has also removed a prescription computer game called EndeavorRx to treat ADHD in kids in between 8 and 12 years of ages.

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