Has anyone used the “gamma core” device?

It’s a handheld vagus nerve stimulator. My headache specialist is recommending trying it since I have had ZERO success with over a dozen preventative medications and the migraines are severe, 24/7, hard to treat and land me in urgent care at least once per month (plus 2-4 doctor visits a week for nerve blocks, trigger point injections and toradol shots). It sounds ok but wondering if it has helped anyone here. Suppose to also work for depression which would be amazing because meds aren’t keeping it under control and I’m getting very tired with fighting it (harder to handle then the pain). Thanks!


Community Answers
  • Tamara author
    1 year ago

    And it’s not to happen ….. it’s $500 a month!!! I can’t afford that since I only work part time and got my fired from my job so jobless and moneyless at end of September.

    I really hope it doesn’t work …… hate how treatments are not accessible just because of money. I live in Canada, health care is suppose to be free!:(

  • Joanna Bodner moderator
    1 year ago

    Hi Tamara,
    One of our contributors wanted me to pass along her experience as well. She has had success with the gammaCore. Hope her response helps! Please see below.

    The gammaCore aborts most of her migraine attacks completely. It has also made her migraine symptoms much less severe. When she has an attack, her pain level is a 3 or 4 and her other symptoms are so mild that she can function at about 80% of normal through the attack. Her migraine frequency has not changed, but she’s OK with that because she’s so much more functional. It has also helped her depression. After using the gammaCore for six months, she began weaning off her antidepressants, which she took for about 20 years. She has been off antidepressants for about six months and has no signs of depression. The gammaCore has been truly life-changing for her and she continues to see more improvement, even after 14 months of using it.

  • Tamara author
    1 year ago

    Seriously it’s not rechargeable?! That sucks. Yes I get a free trial for 45 days to test it out (just waiting for approval from company). It is suppose to work for depression as well which would be nice because we are having a hard time treating and managing my depression and anixety.

    How much does it cost? If I have to keep replacing that is going to be a big difference if I can continue to use it – I can barely work part time as it is now because of the daily migraines.

    Thanks!

  • Anna Eidt
    1 year ago

    Hi Tamara,

    I have tried it for about a month, using it several times a day as recommended. It was pretty easy to use, but it didn’t seem to do much for me as a preventative. There were a few times where it seemed to abort or delay an oncoming attack, but not reliably enough for me to shell out the money for subsequent devices. (My first one was free).

    For some people, it makes a huge difference though! Here is a tidy little overview of clinical findings as summarized by The Migraine Trust:
    https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ipg552/chapter/4-Efficacy#efficacy-of-transcutaneous-stimulation-of-the-cervical-branch-of-the-vagus-nerve-for-treating-2

    I’m in Canada, where the device is approved. I hear approval is coming to the states very soon. I hope US providers will also offer the first device free for you to test before buying. They should also provide you with a brief training session online.

    I definitely think it’s worth a try. Best of luck!! (And here’s hoping they’ll make a rechargeable version, because buying a new device every time seems like a total scam to me!)

    All the best,

    Anna

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