tipstim-crps-01-e

Cutting-edge technology – the product

Tip-stimulation with tipstim® facilitates long-lasting therapy procedures. By sensory stimulation of the finger tips, tipstim® drives plasticity processes in cerebral areas involved in the activation of the hand and fingers. Specially designed stimulation patterns – developed in many years of research and studies – are being generated by a pulse generator and are being applied directly to the finger tips via a completely new and highly-sophisticated therapy glove (tipstim® glove).

tipstim® glove is the first product of its kind making use of a new conductive and biocompatible textile which has been proven for medical use. By processing modern materials tipstim® glove shows a high wearing comfort and a high accuracy of fit

The therapy itself is completely painless, without side-effects and very easy to apply. The patient simply pulls over the glove, connects it to the pulse generator and starts the therapy session once a day for 1 hour. The therapy does not demand any special attention from the patient. Due to the small size of the pulse generator, the therapy can easily be integrated into everyday life and home care – even when being limited in mobility. In principle, therapy can be applied everywhere, even during walking, and during other occupations such as reading or watching television.

Medical Indications

For improvement of sensorimotor abilities after brain damage due to stroke (subacute or chronic), craniocerebral injury or for improvement of sensory functions along with a pain reduction in CRPS Type 1 patients. tipstim® can be used with patients with an incomplete sensomotory hemiparesis or monoparesis after acquired brain injuries (mainly stroke, craniocerebral injury) and with CRPS Type 1 patients.

tipstim® is suitable for patients who are over 16 years of age – with no upper age limit.

Exclusion criteria:

  • Electrohypersensitivity
  • Cognitive impairment (in particular in case of lack of compliance)
  • Severe polyneuropathy or peripheral nerve lesions in the region of the affected extremity
  • Stroke incident within the last two weeks
  • Metal implants in the area to be treated
  • Pacemaker, cardiac damages
  • Epilepsy or increased epileptogenity

Excellent results - high-level efficacy

tipstim Brain Activation

Cortical activation (MRT) of hand areas before and after tip-stimulation

Left: before tip-stimulation
Right: after 60 min of tip-stimulation

The proven efficiency of tipstim® results from stimulation patterns specially designed for the most effective enforcement of neuroplasticity processes. Clinical studies show that these special patterns produce cerebral changes which lead to persistent improvement of a patients’ sensorimotor abilities. By means of randomized and placebo-controlled clinical trials in several rehabilitation centers, significant therapeutic ameliorations of sensorimotor deficits could be shown for both subacute and chronic stroke patients. Especially sensory deficits and deficits of proprioceptive functions have shown a much better recovery than with standard rehabilitation therapy alone.

tipstim®-therapy is also highly recommendable for chronic stroke patients. Single case studies showed that even patients, whose apoplectic insult occurred many years ago, benefited significantly from this kind of therapy.

Moreover, another clinical pilot study in CRPS Type 1 patients showed a statistically significant improvement of sensory functions of the hand concerned along with a pain reduction in some of the patients observed – after just 5 days (45 minutes each) of stimulation.

The tipstim®-therapy is efficient, economical and pleasant to the patient and strikes a new path in the rehabilitation of stroke patients.

Medical background

medical effectiveness of tip stimulation

Generally, neuroplasticity-based rehabilitation utilizes task specific training and mass practice to drive plasticity processes and brain reorganization to restore behavior. However, afferent somatosensory information is not only crucial for tactile and haptic but also for motor performance. Conceivably, impaired sensory abilities further complicate motor function recovery. Therefore, the development of additional and alternative approaches that could supplement, enhance, or even replace conventional training procedures would be advantageous.

Over many years, research at the Institute for Neuroinformatics at the Ruhr University Bochum, a highly-reputed German university, explores the potentials and efficacy of passive sensory stimulation approaches as an alternative means to directly enforce neuroplasticity mechanisms. Repetitive sensory stimulation in brain injury patients over weeks or longer improves persistently tactile perception and sensorimotor behavior.

Sensory stimulation drives plastic processes in the brain areas activated by the stimulation. Because rehabilitation is based on such plastic processes, sensory stimulation allows targeted modification of brain processes and thus alteration of human behavior.

Previous studies have shown that sensory stimulation in fact induces reorganization in and around those brain areas that became dysfunctional by stroke or other brain injuries. This reorganization will facilitate reactivation of cortical tissue that has preserved some functionality. The resulting remodeling of cortical circuits is then assumed to mediate behavioral recovery.

From a medical point of view, the persistence of beneficial effects, the ease of application and the broad range of behavioral improvements make sensory stimulation a prime candidate for intervention and rehabilitation in brain injury patients.

Delineation from peripheral stimulation methods
A variety of different forms of so-called TENS or EMS procedures are in use to support muscular functions to improve motor behavior or to treat chronic pain. All these approaches have in common that they target periphery such as skin or skeletal muscles. In contrast, tip-stimulation with tipstim® employs sensory stimulation as a means to directly interfere with brain activity and local neuroplasticity mechanisms. In this sense, sensory stimulation is a vehicle to target directly brain processes for a locally specific induction of plastic reorganization.

The tip-stimulation using tipstim® is a joint project of the Institute of Neuroinformatics (Neural Plasticity Lab) at the Ruhr University Bochum and the Department of Neurology, BG-Kliniken Bergmannsheil at the Ruhr-University with the companies Haynl Elektronik GmbH and BOSANA Medizintechnik GmbH.

Studies & literature

Reference study:

JC Kattenstroth*, T Kalisch*, W Greulich, M Tegenthoff, HR Dinse Repetitive sensory stimulation for the treatment of sensorimotor deficits in subacute stroke patients: a randomised, sham-controlled trial published 23th annual congress of the German Society of Neuro-Rehabilitation, December 2013

More studies as PDF:To Download-Page

Summary of the reference study’s results in subacute stroke patients:

improvement sensory functions

standard rehabilitation alone

*

standard rehabilitation + tip-stimulation

***

improvement motor functions

standard rehabilitation alone

*

standard rehabilitation + tip-stimulation

***

improvement proprioceptive functions

standard rehabilitation alone

-

standard rehabilitation + tip-stimulation

**

Where can I get tipstim®?

tipstim® is a brand new medical product which might not yet be available from a local dealer in your country.

BOSANA Medizintechnik GmbH
Kappusstiege 13
46282 Dorsten
Germany

Phone: +49 (0) 2362 999620
Fax: +49 (0) 2362 9996222
E-Mail: sales@bosana.de

tipstim®-set consists of:

  • tipstim® pulse generator
  • Hi-Tech glove tipstim® glove*
  • Connecting cable
  • 4 x 1,5 V AA alkaline battery
  • Instruction manual
  • Transport and storage box

* durability of tipstim® glove is limited to 100 applications of 60 minutes each (approx. 3 months). tipstim® glove has to be changed for a new one afterwards.