Center for Wound Surgery Wundchirurgiezentrum (Logo)

Innovative pain therapy

with auricular stimulation of the vagus nerve

The stimulation of the vagus nerve as a method of pain relief is the result of many years of experience in the therapy of treatment-resistant pain. Applying this procedure helps to relieve the pain in the long term without burdening the body with medication.

What concept is auricular vagus nerve stimulation based on?

The vagus nerve is a central part of the parasympathetic nervous system, which regulates the functioning of internal organs including heart rate, blood pressure and respiration. It extends in countless branches from the head via the esophagus and the heart to the abdomen and thus ensures the exchange of information between the brain and the other organs.

In addition, the vagus nerve controls regenerative processes in the body.

"Auricular vagus nerve stimulation" refers to the stimulation of the extensions of this important nerve in the ear (Latin: auris). Certain brainstem structures are activated. This method has been tried and tested for years, and clinical studies confirm its effectiveness.

What kind of pain can be treated with this therapy?

  • Acute pain, e.g. after surgery
  • Chronic pain, e.g. back pain, migraine, cervical syndrome, peripheral arterial disease

What is special about this form of therapy?

  • Gentle, well tolerated, no medication, therefore few side effects
  • General increase in the body's ability to regenerate
  • Anti-inflammatory effect
  • Promotion of blood circulation
  • Lasting results beyond the treatment period

How does vagus nerve stimulation work?

  • The pain is blocked by electrical stimulation of the nerve fibers in the ear.
  • The pain control system in the brain is stimulated.
  • Neurotransmitters (e.g. endorphins) are released.
  • The activity of the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for recovery and building up the body's own reserves, is promoted.
  • The autonomous control of the organs by the vagus nerve is improved; this supports and maintains the therapeutic effect.

How does the treatment work?

A small neuromodulation device that emits electrical impulses at set intervals is taped close to the patient's ear. Three fine titanium needles are placed at specific points in the ear that are supplied by the vagus nerve. They receive the impulses via wires and transmit them to the nerve endings.

The stimulation can be individually adapted to the needs of the patient for optimal pain therapy or wound healing. The electrical impulses are perceived as a pleasant, light tapping and do not interfere with everyday life: maximum effect with full mobility.

How long will the treatment take?

The duration of treatment depends on the needs of the patient and varies from person to person. This is then coordinated with the indication.

The therapy begins with a unit of three to five days. Noticeable success can often be seen after this first phase. A lasting effect can already be expected after a treatment period of around six to eight weeks.