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An Introduction to Neuromodulation

Dr Brian Klagges, MD

Dr. Brian Klagges has served as a pain interventionalist and anesthesiologist at Amoskeag Anesthesia in Manchester, New Hampshire, since 2007. Brian Klagges, MD, offers a broad range of treatment methodologies, including advanced neuromodulation techniques.

Drawing on the concept that the body's networks of electrical signals can be used for therapeutic benefit, neuromodulation works by altering problematic nerve activity. It is most often used to treat chronic pain, but has also been used to treat conditions ranging from Parkinson's disease to incontinence. Even cochlear implants, which can restore a person's ability to hear, function on the principle of neuromodulation.
Neuromodulation addresses pain and other nerve functions in that it artificially controls the levels of a particular subset of neurotransmitters. Known as neuromodulators, they differ from other neurotransmitters in that they affect an entire region of neural tissue, whereas common neurotransmitters act on particular neuroreceptors in a single synaptic transmission.
These transmissions are rapid and precise, whereas neuromodulators act on slower neuroreceptors. The process affects, not a short-term action, but the properties of the affected neurons, which causes the activity between them to change. In many cases, this can mean lasting relief for the condition being treated.

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