Transcutaneous neurostimulation with wearables continues to find new healthcare applications. We’ve written about neurostimulation to help with migraine headaches, tinnitus, and a range of other applications, especially in pain management.

Cala Health is a California-based company that develops wearable therapeutic neuromodulation devices. The company funded a retrospective analysis study that was published recently in Tremor. The study looked at the records of 321 patients with essential tremor who used the Cala Trio wrist-worn device for temporary relief of hand tremor. The Cala Trio is an FDA-approved transcutaneous afferent pattern stimulation (TAPS) device. The Cala Trio stimulates the median and radial nerves in the wrist. Patients self-administer treatments by wearing the device for a prescribed time. Session duration is at least 20 to 40 minutes and can differ depending on the wrist position and the severity of the tremor. After the stimulation session, the patient removes the wearable and places it back on a charging station. After a treatment session, the goal is that the patient will be able to successfully perform life skills such as eating, drinking, preparing meals, or writing. The change is temporary, but can help patients regain a measure of independent and satisfaction.

Patients in the published study also received pharmacological treatment. They self-reported whether they experienced improvement, no change, or worse tremors following treatment with the Cala Trio. According to the report, 74% of the patients reported improvement in eating, 65% in drinking, and 64% in writing. Notably, 65% of the patients reported improvement in overall quality of life.

The Cala Health study could benefit from third party replication and validation. However, the prospect of noninvasive neurostimulation that results in timely improvement in the ability to perform personal tasks is exciting, even if it’s a temporary fix.