RTHM is using biometric technology to improve the quality of care at its Long COVID treatment clinic. The organization is specifically trying to find ways to reverse or reduce the severity of Long COVID symptoms, using an in-house diagnostic algorithm that analyzes biometric data to figure out which treatment is likely to be the most effective for each patient.
The biometric data is collected with apps and wearable devices. RTHM’s algorithm will then make a recommendation based on the results. The organization currently offers several different treatment options, including Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB) thanks to a new partnership with Stella. SGB is a treatment method in which sympathetic nerve blockers are injected in the neck to address pain in the upper regions of the body.
In the past, SGB has been used to treat those whose nervous function has changed due to some kind of trauma, such as a heart attack or a more traditional physical injury. Stella and RTHM are hoping that COVID-19 infection may fall into that category. SGB treatment has lessened and even eliminated chronic pain in some cases, and may be able to restore the sympathetic nervous system to its previous (and healthier) state after a traumatic event has occurred.
“Stella’s SGB is one of the options within our individualized treatment plans, but it’s an important one,” said RTHM Co-Founder Jennifer Curtin. “The collaboration between RTHM and Stella provides our patients with a unique and potentially helpful treatment.”
“The number of people affected by Long COVID represents a major health crisis,” added Stella Co-Founder and CSO Michael Gershenzon. “Knowing that Stella’s treatment might be able to help an entirely new population is incredible.”
As it stands, Long COVID symptoms have been observed in roughly 30 percent of those who have come down with the disease. Those who are considered candidates for SGB will receive treatment from certified anesthesiologists that have been trained by Stella.
Of course, Stella and RTHM are not the only organizations using wearables to try to combat COVID-19. The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) is using the Biostrap wearable to study Long COVID, while devices like the Fitbit and the Tiger Tech COVID Plus Monitor have been used to watch for early signs of the disease itself.
June 6, 2022 – by Eric Weiss