The Phoenix® is an earbud that delivers a light electrical tingle to activate your vagus nerve, which has a calming effect on the body and helps reduce the symptoms of PTSD.
The auricular branch of the vagus nerve only targets afferent fibers, sending signals directly to the brain without the need for surgery.
No SIDE EFFECTS
Unlike antidepressants' high levels of side effects like impotence, insomnia, and agitation; no study using taVNS has ever reported a significant adverse side effect of therapy.
The Phoenix® adaptive-response algorithm and multiple modes of treatment deliver targeted relief and allow users to customize their treatment to their individual needs.
The Phoenix® has demonstrated a clinically-significant reduction of the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS-5) with a 91% responder rate.
“What do I have to lose? It’s not a drug that I’m putting in my system and its not something that I’m smoking. So, if you’re telling me that you can put something in my ear and make me better, sign me up every day of the week!”
-Pilot Study Participant
WHAT IS VNS?
The vagus nerve (vagus means “wandering” in Latin) is the longest cranial nerve in the human body. It actually is not one nerve, but a family of neural pathways originating in several areas of the brain. The vagus is the key component of the parasympathetic branch of the autonomic nervous system, and because the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems act reciprocally - when one goes up, the other goes down -- the vagus nerve is critical to our therapy due to its beneficial effect in restoring balance in cases where sympathetic activity is abnormally raised or parasympathetic activity is lowered.
Stimulation of the vagus enhances memory storage processes and remodels the amygdala-hypothalamus connection. Recent evidence suggests that this may be due to the activation of neurons in the nucleus locus coeruleus resulting in the release of norepinephrine throughout the neuraxis. It is supposed that enhancing the release of norepinephrine in the central nervous system facilitates recovery of function. Basically, VNS can help someone learn (or unlearn) faster.
So, when you pair VNS with a learning process, whether it is mental or physical, multiple studies have shown its effectiveness in increasing the speed and depth of the learning curve.
Vagal nerve stimulation affects the brain systems involved in emotional regulation, including the amygdala. VNS activates, among other things, the locus coeruleus (the principal site for brain synthesis of norepinephrine) which affects the limbic system. The limbic system is a complex system of nerves and networks in the brain concerned with instinct and mood, controlling the basic emotions (fear, pleasure, anger) and drives (hunger, sex, dominance, care of offspring.) The Polyvagal theory predicts, and a variety of studies supports, the conclusion that VNS diminishes emotional reactivity and increases socially adaptive emotional regulation in the limbic system. These are the same regions and networks that are abnormally active in response to emotional stimuli in PTSD patients.
Additional Target Indications for tVNS include:
Mild cognitive impairment
Anxiety and depression
General sleep disruption
Recovery from partial spine injury
Enhanced cognition and learning