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Abbott Pain Relief System with Connected App Receives FDA Approval

Abbott’s Proclaim XR SCS integrates with a useful smartphone application. Its success highlights the importance of seamless connectivity in modern medical devices.

Abbott’s drug-free, highly effective chronic pain relief device received FDA approval back in 2019. This January, the Proclaim XR SCS system received approval for the treatment of diabetic peripheral neuropathy. The continued success of this device highlights the importance of connectivity in modern medical device technology.

Abbott’s Proclaim XR SCS System

The Proclaim XR spinal cord stimulation system provides an alternative to opioids and drug therapy for those suffering from chronic pain. The approval for this device was recently expanded to include chronic pain caused by diabetic peripheral neuropathy.

Diabetes peripheral neuropathy affects an estimated 28% of American adults with diabetes or over 7.5 million people. This painful condition is caused by persistent and damaging high blood sugar. It can affect both people living with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. As damage to small blood vessels limits blood flow to peripheral appendages, like the hands and feet, nerve fibers are damaged. This results in burning, tingling, or sharp jabbing pains in the limbs. 

How Does Proclaim XR Work?

Unlike drug treatments which come with a myriad of side effects and can cause dependency issues, the Proclaim XR SCS system works without chemicals by stimulating the spinal cord. Numerous studies have proven that low-energy spinal cord stimulation can help reduce pain signaling in the brain. The Proclaim XR system works on this principle and includes many advantages over current options for spinal cord stimulation therapy.

Most notably, this new treatment includes a long-lasting battery that does not require recharging. When used on the low-dose setting, the battery will last up to 10 years. This feature greatly reduces user burden. But the real hero of the Proclaim XR story is the connected smartphone application.

Connected Smartphone App

Proclaim XR works with Abbott’s NeuroSphere Virtual Clinic Apple device application. This connectivity delivers a host of advanced features that make this SCS system highly usable and desirable for patients.

Users can easily check and adjust their treatment doses and program type using their smartphone or tablet. They can also engage a sleep timer and choose from different stimulation modes to fit their needs.

Even more impressive, this app allows patients to connect directly with their physician if they have questions or feel they need to change their treatment plan. The physician can even change the dose or treatment setting remotely, allowing for more customized pain management without the hassle of making a trip to the doctor.

These connectivity features give Proclaim XR a huge advantage over other big-name SCS treatments approved for painful diabetic neuropathy. 

Both Medtronic and Nevro have similar SCS devices on the market. Both offer long battery life and easy insertion. But the Nevro Senza and Medtronic Intellis lack the connected applications. And Medtronic’s non-rechargeable SCS option, Vanta, only connects with an app available on the included device controller. 

Diabetes management in the modern world comes with a slew of high-tech devices, many of which have connected applications. When given a choice between an SCS system that integrates with an app they can download on their phone or one that requires yet another piece of tech to carry around, most will opt for the former. And that is exactly the trend we are seeing in Proclaim XR’s success.

Connected Devices Are the Future

Adding smartphone control to the Abbott Proclaim XR was an obvious move for an implanted device that the user will need frequent control over. But Abbott didn’t stop there. They increased the connectivity of the application by allowing for communication between patients and providers. In addition to this, providers can use the application to remotely adjust dosing and program stats.

Where this application falls short, however, is in its platform versatility. Currently, NeuroSphere Virtual Clinic is only available for Apple products. This is a huge opportunity missed considering only about 27% of consumers own an iPhone. Meanwhile, Android operating systems dominate the market with their product in the pocket of around 72% of consumers.

Abbott’s Proclaim XR SCS system is a great example of how smart connectivity can make your product more desirable to the average user. But it also highlights the need for versatile and adaptable software to create those connections. 

Software created with component architecture has a more flexible framework that can fit a variety of platforms with fewer changes. Creating a highly usable software development kit is equally important for maximizing integration and partner enablement. Together, these approaches for software development and growth can help your company achieve seamless scalability, higher sales out of the gate, and greater market share.

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