Business, neurology  

Boston Scientific receives EU clearance for new lead for electrical pain-relief device

7 November 2006

Natick, Mass., USA. Boston Scientific Corporation (NYSE:BSX) today announced that it has received the European CE Mark for its new Artisan 2x8 surgical lead for use with the Precision Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS) System. This surgical or "paddle" lead potentially expands the application of the company's neurostimulation technology to an additional 20% of people with chronic pain of the limbs, back or trunk who may require the new lead.

In Europe, one in five people suffers from moderate to severe chronic pain, and one in three is unable or less able to maintain an independent lifestyle due to their pain. Between one-half and two-thirds of people with chronic pain are less able or unable to exercise, enjoy normal sleep, perform household chores, attend social activities, drive a car or walk.

"The Artisan lead addresses the needs of those patients who require the stability of a surgical lead to reap the benefits of the precise stimulation technology," said James Akinwunmi, consultant Neurosurgeon at Princess Royal Hospital in West Sussex, UK, who has a special interest in Pain Management. "The combination of the Artisan lead with the Precision System makes neurostimulation accessible to more patients with chronic pain."

The Artisan 2x8 Surgical Lead features 16 tightly spaced contacts in a two-column array that are connected to the Precision implantable pulse generator. This enables each of the 16 Artisan lead contacts to be independently powered and controlled.

The Precision SCS System is a small implantable neuromodulation device that can be easily programmed to fit each patient's needs. It provides pain relief by delivering electric signals that mask the pain by inducing a tingling sensation called paresthesia. Patients can control their pain in a targeted fashion using a convenient remote control that activates the device.

"The innovative Artisan Surgical Lead enables physicians to use the Precision SCS System in an additional estimated 20 percent of chronic pain sufferers who require the features of a paddle lead to benefit from our novel technology," said Ed Northup, President of Boston Scientific's Pain Management business. "Neurostimulation offers a safe alternative for sufferers of chronic pain, particularly as it avoids the side effects of painkillers."

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