Memorial Hermann Prevention and Recovery Center (PaRC) now offers Neurolumen therapy, a non-invasive, drug-free alternative for pain relief, as a component of its chemical dependency-based pain recovery program.

Approved by the Food and Drug Administration, this pain treatment protocol delivers three modes of healing energy in the form of laser, light-emitting diode, and electro-stimulation. The Neurolumen device combines the restorative properties of biophotonic interaction with the therapeutic and analgesic properties of electrical stimulation. The resulting enhanced vascular circulation improves blood flow, which subsequently decreases swelling and often results in lower pain levels.

“Many of our patients have found Neurolumen treatments to provide fast-acting pain relief,” said Pain Recovery Program Clinical Therapist James S. Flowers, Ph.D., L.P.C.-S. “This therapy is a good alternative to traditional pain medication because it offers similar results, but without the dangerous risks and side effects of opiates.”

According to the National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 46 people die every day in the United States from an overdose of prescription painkillers drugs such as Vicodin, OxyContin, Opana, and methadone. Chronic exposure to drugs of abuse may lead to tolerance or the need for higher drug dosages to produce an effect.

After she was injured at work, patient Billie K. endured five back surgeries to repair a slipped lumbar disc and three herniated discs. In severe pain for more than 13 years, she grew frustrated and depressed that doctors were not able to help her.

“My last surgery was in January and the doctor had me on 12 hydrocodone pills and a fentanyl patch every day,” said Billie. “I couldn’t function and on a scale of 10, my pain level was still about a seven.”

The end of June, Billie finally turned to the Pain Recovery Program at Memorial Hermann PaRC.

“Neurolumen, plus the techniques of mediation, relaxation, and deep-breathing that the staff here taught me, have changed my life,” said Billie. “I don’t take any pills and my pain level is probably a one. I’m focused, motivated, and happy.”

Safely applied to any area of the body, Neurolumen patients typically receive three 30-minute treatments a week. Found to be effective in treating virtually every type of pain, the therapy is designed to improve circulation and help relieve pain and swelling associated with injury, neuropathy, diabetes, vascular disease, atherosclerosis, and arthritis.

Chronic pain conditions frequently require a multifaceted approach to treatment. The Pain Recovery Program at PaRC addresses the unique, bio-psycho-social factors involved in each patient’s case. In additional to traditional approaches to pain management such as physical and behavioral therapy, PaRC’s team of physicians and specialists often use other alternative therapies including acupuncture, yoga, relaxation training, meditation, nutrition for pain recovery, and biofeedback.

“Two primary goals of PaRC’s Pain Recovery Program are pain relief to the highest degree possible, and stopping or reversing the negative impact and downward course of a patient’s pain condition, lifestyle, work, interpersonal relationships, and overall well-being,” said Flowers. “We evaluate, treat, educate, and guide each patient through the process of pain and addiction recovery.”