The technique is called percutaneous peripheral nerve stimulation. It involves inserting a small wire next to a nerve and using a stimulator to deliver a mild electrical current to the affected area, interrupting pain transmission.
A team led by Dr. Brian Ilfeld, of the University of California, San Diego, tested the device in patients who were having foot, ankle or knee operations, or major shoulder surgery. The wire can be placed while the patient is awake, without need for sedation.
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