Our first patient with CRPS due to glossopharyngeal neuralgia syndrome yields outstanding results with scrambler therapy

Mirelle_VA_Image 2_betterApril 2, 2014

Mireille, an attorney from Alexandria, VA, came to Calmare Therapy NJ supported by her husband on March 11 for CRPS treatment.

Her neuropathic condition began in April 2012 after a sore throat turned into glossopharyngeal neuralgia (a condition in which there are repeated episodes of severe shock-like pain in the tongue, throat, ear, tonsils and head which can last from a few seconds to a few minutes). Eventually diagnosed with CRPS, the disease began to overtake her upper body including her back, arm, hand, shoulder and neck.

Mireille learned about Calmare scrambler therapy after conducting research on the Internet for new, non-invasive treatments for Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome. Because Dr. Cooney was Calmare Certified, she spoke with him by phone and they mutually agreed that she was a suitable candidate to undergo treatment.

A myriad of drug and treatment efforts

When she arrived, Mireille was living with a pain level of 9 /10 in her upper back and the left side of her neck. She also presented with physical symptoms including allodynia in the neck and shoulder, discoloration in the hand, occasional swelling in the arm and ongoing temperature fluctuations in her arm. Her EMG and MRI results were negative, which is common with CRPS patients.

Mireille and her doctors had aggressively sought a variety of medications and treatments to neutralize her pain including:

  • Prescription pain medications
  • P-stim neurostimulator
  • Spinal cord stimulator
  • Ketamine
  • Physical therapy
  • Chiropractic
  • Injections
  • Acupuncture

Calmare for patients with spinal cord stimulators ( SCS )

So long as the SCS is turned off throughout the 10-treatment Calmare regimen, the patient can safely undergo therapy. Day-by-day, as Mireille underwent the 45-minute treatments, her physical symptoms began to lessen and her pain level fell. As treatment progressed, the length of time she felt no pain continued to grow between each daily treatment.

Finally, after two additional treatments, Mireille headed back to Virginia with 0 pain for the first time in long two years. She was also thrilled to be able to sleep through the night again ─ even in a hotel bed! (We are often told that a good night’s sleep is one of the most cherished quality-of-life issues for people living with chronic pain).

Best of all, Mireille, who had taken a professional leave of absence as a law clerk with the Federal Government last December due to her debilitating pain, is eagerly preparing to get back to work after resting at hone for a week.

Our patient with shingles-related PHN responds well to single Calmare booster treatments

Shingles imageNew York resident Joan K., our first shingles patient, completed the Calmare treatment program in June 2012 after she had exhausted a battery of other pain therapy efforts trying to end her severe chronic pain.

Shingles, a viral infection of the nerve roots, can be contracted by any person who had the chickenpox virus. Approximately 500,000 cases of shingles occur every year in the U.S. Most people recover from their bout, but for about 30 percent, the pain doesn’t go away. It can last for months, years, or even the rest of their lives.

Postherpetic neuralgia (PHN)

These patients have what is called postherpetic neuralgia (PHN), when the shingles virus damages the nerves of the skin. In these more severe cases, even the slightest touch — from clothing or even a breeze — can be excruciatingly painful.

Mrs. K describes her PHN pain as “severe stabbing pain”.  She also experienced some nagging soreness along her rib cage. We were all delighted when her scrambler therapy efforts yielded a successful outcome back in 2012 and her pain was not just lessened, it was actually eliminated (0 / 10).

Three months after completing her treatment series, she experienced a slight return of the pain and came in for a single booster treatment lasting about 40-minutes; In December 2012, she came in for a second booster. In both instances, she received one treatment and the stabbing pain was gone again.

Joan’s pain does not return for more than a year after two boosters

She did not require any boosters during 2013 and last week, 15-months after her first Calmare treatment series, she came in for one treatment that again eliminated her pain.

While PHN is not a common condition, we have seen consistently positive patient outcomes using the scrambler. I am more than encouraged by the results I am seeing. If you or someone you know is living with severe shingles pain, I would be happy to talk or meet with you to discuss your medical history and determine if Calmare might help to end your PHN pain as well.

Joy’s Calmare Therapy for RSD reinvigorates her health ─ and her checkbook

Joy Morris_3.2014You may recall Joy Morris was here with us last summer for the 10-treatment series of Calmare Therapy  to combat reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) located in her left knee down through her foot. When she arrived, her pain level was 10/10.

Since her successful therapy, (she left New Jersey at a 0 / 10 pain level), her chronic pain from RSD diminished to the point that she no longer needed any of the 10 pain medications she was prescribed. But the good news didn’t end there.

Once Joy was free from all the pain pills, her overall health and well-being improved dramatically:

  • She began to have more energy and lost a significant amount of weight.
  • In turn, she soon no longer needed high blood pressure medication.
  • Joy no longer needs medication for elevated liver enzymes which returned to a normal range as a result of post-Calmare weight-loss and the elimination of pain drugs.

The benefits of life without pain medications

“In less than a year, I lost 55 pounds and three dress sizes!” the West Virginian mother and grandmother says. “You’d be surprised how alive and active you can be when you aren’t living every day in the pain medication haze.”

Since Calmare, Joy says she has saved nearly $7,000 in doctor visits and prescription drug costs. “This has been a very good thing because I was able to use the savings to buy a new wardrobe!”

“Last week, before Joy’s two Calmare booster treatments, her pain level had intermittently increased as high as a 7 but hovered around a 3. After two boosters lasting 40-minutes each, she left at a 0 pain level again,” Dr. Cooney reports.

“Joy is a vivacious, happy person who deserves to live a pain-free life. Her RSD was one of the more severe cases I have treated; I am very pleased that she was able to sustain a 10-month span before she needed any follow-up treatments.”




Join me March 25 at the CRPS/RSD Support Group of South Jersey

support group

I am honored to be a guest speaker discussing my experience using Calmare scrambler therapy to combat  Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome and Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy.

CRPS/RSD & Chronic Pain Support Group of South Jersey
Date:  Tuesday, March 25, 2014
Time: 7:30 p.m.
YMCA of Mount Laurel
The Child Care Center
59 Centerton Road
Mt. Laurel,  New Jersey 08054
How to Enter: The YMCA Child Care Center is located at the far left rear of The YMCA Building, parking and entrance to The Child Care Center is at that location.  
Lisa Anne Vasey is the chairperson of the support group, which meets on the fourth Tuesday of every month at the YMCA in Mt. Laurel, NJ. For more information, contact her at lisav1@live.com .
Lisa noted that the event is open to anyone living with RSD/CRPS, or another chronic pain condition, as well as friends and family members.

Yes, I am a chiropractor, also

February 7, 2014

RAM logo



This week I’ve had two different patients tell me they didn’t know I was a chiropractor; rather, they assumed I administered Calmare scrambler therapy exclusively.

I have actually been a practicing chiropractic physician in Bergen County for more than 30 years at Rutherford Allied Medical Group here in Rutherford. Some years ago, I was frustrated that we had some patients for whom traditional chiropractic services, and even alternative therapies such as acupuncture, did not lessen or alleviate their acute or chronic pain.

Dr. Robert Kelly, our staff physician, and I agreed we would not resort to him prescribing painkillers, in most cases. Thus, our search for another solution let us, finally, to Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment.

Every day, we see patients who live down the street or across the country (as far away as Europe and Australia) in need of pain management to rid them of acute and the most severe chronic pain.

Everyone on our team truly loves being here (and we’ll tell you when you’re here, believe me) because we have an opportunity to use our skills and today’s technology to help people in pain.

I truly have the best job in the world. Good weekend all!


My latest article on Spine Universe about Calmare scrambler therapy helping a pharma tech with severe RSD

spine-universe logoBy Dr. Michael J. Cooney

For those of you who know me, you’re fully aware that I don’t tend to support using debilitating and expensive painkillers to treat pain.

Imagine the irony when  a patient from Maryland came to see me, suffering with severe RSD, who  worked for a pharmaceutical company.

I’ve written about her treatment story  in my new column for SpineUniverse.com, a terrific resource for anyone with head pain and migraines, neck pain and back pain. I highly recommend their site for accurate and up-to-the-minute research findings.  I hope you enjoy it.


Boy with RND looks forward to his first pain-free Christmas in three years

Gabriel_age11_12.2013(Update: 1/2014: Gabriel’s mother called us this morning to say her family is elated that their son continues to be pain-free and he is finally returning to public school today, without crutches…)

Part of being a child is taking your share of hits, scrapes, bumps and bruises. But some children who sustain these routine injuries are faced with the unexpected onset of chronic pain that can take away the simple joy of childhood. This chronic condition, reflex neurovascular dystrophy (RND), is in the same disease family as RSD / CRPS and fibromyalgia.

The root of all of these diseases stems from damaged nerves (most commonly as the result of an injury or surgery) which amplifies the pain signal to the brain. The resulting pain can be excruciating and especially heartbreaking when this pain is suffered by a child.  RND is more common than you might think.

Last year, we profiled a high school student, Katie, a smart and athletic teenager with RND.  She responded beautifully to scrambler therapy and while we miss her, she left our office pain-free and has never needed to return for booster treatments (read about her post-treatment update letter here:  http://calmaretherapynj.com/2013/02/14/mother-of-teen-with-fibromyalgia-shares-calmare-experience/).

Gabriel’s young life is put on hold by pain

Two weeks ago, 11-year-old Gabriel from New Jersey came in with RND in his right leg after sustaining a soccer injury in 2010. He described his pain as a 9/10 upon arrival. Over the past few years, he underwent the standard course of treatments for neuropathy with a battery of doctors including his pediatrician, orthopedist, rheumatologist and pain management specialists. He took painkilling-medication and endured unpleasant injections to treat severe pain.

Due to his extreme ongoing pain and skin sensitivity, Gabriel had to drop out of soccer and karate and be home-schooled. He suffered from chronic fatigue and weight gain, as a result of the painkilling medications.

I began treating him with daily Calmare Therapy treatments of about an hour a day; starting with the second treatment, and Gabriel’s pain began to diminish and I saw a smile for the first time.

An optimal outcome with a treatment that has no pain or side effects

After completing the standard two-week treatment protocol, Gabriel was pain-free for the first time in three years.  He has begun to sleep through the night again. By the eighth treatment, he was able to put his favorite sneakers on for the first time in months.

Just in time for Christmas, this terrific young man’s Calmare treatment is complete.  He and his elated family are moving forward with their lives, starting with celebrating the holidays in a big way this year.

Thank you to Gabriel and his parents for having the faith and fortitude to keep looking for a drug-free and non-invasive  treatment to overcome chronic RND pain. You positive outcome has been an early Christmas present for me, indeed.

Now is the time to de-stress and lighten the pain load

It’s a week before Christmas and, hopefully, you are seeing some light at the end of the tunnel—your home has a decoration or two;  you’ve ordered some gifts and there might even be a favorite sweet treat or two in the kitchen.  If you are living with chronic pain, you may very well be exhausted and in more pain before the holidays even get here.

Now is the time to take a breather in order to lower your pain levels. Here are some good ways to distress so you are in a positive frame of mind to enjoy the celebration.

Accept Limitations

Living with a chronic pain condition, you may not be able to do everything you had planned during the holiday season. Sometimes, traditions need to change. Don’t beat yourself up. If you couldn’t chop down the tree or prepare a big holiday meal this year, everyone will survive. Instead, enlist the support of other family members and teach them how to carry on your proud family traditions.

Get Some Exercise

“But won’t exercising worsen my pain?” In most cases, when you get your body moving and your heart pumping, your brain releases endorphins, which puts you in a better mood and relieves stress. Moving your body also helps to let go of the day’s worries, allows your busy mind to wander and stretches muscles to keep them from tightening up. Exercise can also help you sleep significantly better at night. Check with your doctor before you start a new exercise regime, just to be sure.

Unwind Your Way

Pencil in plenty of “you” time every single day. You need it and so does your body. Relax and enjoy whatever calms you down and rests your body and mind. Whether it’s a morning stroll for a coffee, getting a massage or enjoying reading a children’s book to a favorite youngster, take the time to unwind and truly enjoy the joy of the holiday season.

Photo Credit: http://parentingpink.com/?p=15693

Pace yourself during the holiday rollercoaster

roller coaster

I have already seen several of my chronic pain patients with elevated pain levels this week after the start of the annual ‘holiday rollercoaster’.

Please pace yourselves. Your health comes FIRST and foremost so that you have the strength to enjoy the ride.

Please get your rest and don’t overdue.

I worry :) 

Exercise can help lessen pain in chronic pain patients

spine-universe logoI’m thoroughly enjoying my blogging experience on SpineUniverse.com.   I’ve interacted with some interesting colleagues and offered advice to several readers.  Now that we are all online, the world seems much more compact!

I’d like to repost a recent article I wrote earlier this week about the value of exercising, even for patients in pain. Several of my Calmare scrambler therapy patients used walking (starting slow and building distance and speed) as the first exercise they undertook once their pain was under control.

Just be sure to consult with  your treating doctor about how much and what exercise is right for you, depending on your medical condition.

Now. Water aerobics anyone? 

From a doctor’s perspective, treating chronic pain is one of the most difficult professional challenges. Every patient is completely unique and so is their body and mind’s reaction to pain.  As a chiropractor who does not support invasive therapies or drugs, it’s my job to help patients discover additional ways to minimize pain that works uniquely for them.

Depending on the severity of your medical condition, this can range from the warm embrace of a beloved pet, wrapping the affected area with a warm towel, sipping a soothing cup of tea or ─or working up a sweat!

Although it may seem counterintuitive, exercise can most certainly be an excellent option to lessen pain.


  • Your body releases endorphins when you exercise, which puts you in a better mood, combats depression and even helps block pain receptors.
  • Exercise also makes your body stronger, which can take some of the stress off areas causing you pain. For example, strengthening your core (belly muscles) can help reduce back pain because your back doesn’t need to work so hard to support your body.

You may be surprised at the positive response your body gives you after even a light workout. First and foremost, however, be sure to discuss starting an exercise routine with your treating doctor first. Once you’ve received the green light to go ahead, consider two of my favorite exercise options:


Yoga is low-impact and incorporates stretching, strengthening, and meditation. Remember, you don’t need to be able to contort yourself into a pretzel to enjoy the benefits of yoga and, in fact, you are encouraged to go at a pace that is comfortable for you.  Most gyms and yoga studios offer classes for beginners, so you’re sure to find the class that suits you.

Swimming and Water Aerobics

If yoga isn’t for you, get in the water and consider a water aerobics program. According to the National Council on Exercise, your body weighs 90% less underwater. This takes a lot of stress off of your joints and muscles, allowing you to move more easily. Proper hydration is key with water aerobics because you won’t realize if you’re actually sweating.

You may be reluctant to get out and start exercising at first, but with the permission of your doctor, gently give it a try. Often, my patients will tell me they were skeptical about the benefits of exercising until they tried it.

And even though you’re excited to get started, take it slow at first so your body can adjust to the new level of activity. Starting a safe exercise program empowers patients in pain to be active and fight back against pain on their own terms.

Let me know if you find an exercise that works for you and I’ll be happy to share it.

Matt visits us for Calmare booster treatments

Matt from MSThat’s the odd thing about Calmare:  Ideally, you hope patients don’t need to come back, but when they do, our team is overjoyed to reconnect with patients whom we have become so friendly with over the two-week treatment cycle.

Matt Hannon, our favorite Mississippian, came up for a week of booster treatments last week in his effort to ward off his RSD pain for a full year.

He posted this today on our Facebook wall this morning, so our day is already perfect at 8:15 am, as a result:

“Had another great week of Calmare booster treatments at Calmare NJ.

Wonderful people, great service, big hearts, wouldn’t want to go anywhere else.  Hoping for a full pain-free year this time! 

Thanks Doc, Kathy and Barbara.  Love you guys.”

Unrelenting parents and a devoted boyfriend help this Florida teenager finally overcome her RSD pain

Dayna Payne and Dr. Cooney_10.2013It may sound odd to say this, but RSD sufferer Dayna Payne, a kind and intelligent 16-year-old, is a fortunate young woman. In late 2011, after surgery as a result of a fractured right foot, Dayna was diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD). Her constant symptoms included burning pain near the incision site, extreme aversion to touch and non-stop “pulsing pain” in the region. Over time, this chronic pain began to spread up through her back, into both wrists, and down to her left knee.

High school interrupted

During her freshman year of high school, Dayna was forced to withdraw from school due to the severity of her condition. All the while, her indefatigable parents aggressively sought out the latest treatment solutions to help their daughter (Dayna’s mother is a registered nurse and assistant director of nursing in the Emergency Department at a local hospital).

“I was taking several pain medications every day ─ Lyrica, Lortab, Ultram, and Nucynta; I also had uncomfortable injections and infusions; nerve blocks and finally underwent the trial for a spinal cord stimulator,” Dayna explains.

Dan Payne, Dayna’s father, says his daughter was not deemed an appropriate candidate for the spinal cord stimulator.  “I was really upset after that bad news,” Dan recalls. “Little did I know, it was the best thing that could have happened.”

Resilient parents + caring boyfriend = A new RSD treatment discovery

Dayna’s devoted boyfriend, Skyler, researched on the Internet about treatments for RSD and discovered a YouTube video of Amanda Davidson from Indiana, a girl about Dayna’s age, who told her story about overcoming severe RSD after undergoing Calmare scrambler therapy. Dr. Michael Cooney of Calmare Therapy NJ, who specializes in treating RSD and CRPS patients, was Amanda’s doctor. Skyler presented his findings to Dayna and her parents, who researched Calmare’s success battling RSD even further.

“I’ll be honest, after all the disappointments we had been through, we nonetheless went up to New Jersey to try the Calmare, but felt pretty skeptical about any chance of it helping our daughter,” Dan says.

While undergoing treatment at Calmare Therapy NJ, Dayna met another RSD patient from Ohio who was receiving Calmare booster treatments. “She told me that this treatment doesn’t hurt and absolutely works,” Dayna says. After the first week of daily 45-minute treatments, Dayna’s pain decreased from a 10/10 to a 3/10. By the end of week two, she was nearly pain-free for a period of almost 24 hours straight. “We decided to do one extra treatment so I could go home with 0 pain, which I did.”

Adjusting to a life with less pain

The Payne family is slowly trying to get used to Dayna’s improved health. Everyone says one of the most meaningful benefits of Calmare’s success is that Dayna can be hugged by her family for the first time in more than two years. “Just being able to do this means the world to me,” Dayna says.

Going forward, the high school junior, now being homeschooled, hopes to return to school and graduate next year with her class. She is also looking forward to attending the prom this year with her boyfriend. But, for now, she still has to remind herself that she can do things in every day life she has not been able to do, such as climbing stairs and gentle running. “After all these years in pain, my brain still keeps telling me to ‘be careful’ before I do anything,” Dayna says.

Dr. Cooney weighs in

Dr. Cooney says that he’s thrilled with Dayna’s outcome but urges her not to get too crazy at first. “Many Calmare patients are understandably eager to jump back into a ‘regular life’ after living on the sidelines for so long,” Dr. Cooney explains. “But initially, take it slow and easy.” The doctor says physically debilitated patients need to ease muscles, which haven’t been used because of the pain factor, back into regular use. “Many patients also need extra sleep after treatment, which is completely normal.”

Dayna offers a few words of advice for others considering Calmare Therapy. “When I spoke with Amanda, she gave me some great advice that helped me so much ─ don’t give up; stick with the therapy. As you continue with the treatments, the time your pain is lessened will get longer and longer until it just finally goes away, which is an amazing feeling!”


Call in to chat with Dr. Cooney on Friday, November 1

rsdnad youDr. Michael J. Cooney will be a guest on Joseph Aquilino’s“RSD and You”  BlogTalk Radio program airing Friday, November 1 at 3 p.m. Eastern time. Joseph is a longtime RSD sufferer who has become a national leader in spreading awareness about this ‘silent’  and debilitating disease affecting children, adults and seniors.

Our patients from around the country are invited to call in (310-982-4253)  and share their experiences as well as individuals, their families or friends who are currently living with CRPS / RSD  /RND who may have questions about scrambler therapy as a treatment for these diseases.

Addendum 11/2/13:  I’d like to add a personal note of thanks to our patients who generously took the time to call-in to the program and share their experiences. You can listen to the program in its entirety by clicking here: 

After six years with full-body CRPS, Calmare’s MC-5A scrambler therapy ends chronic pain and lesions

By Dr. Michael J. Cooney

I had the great pleasure of working with a 51-year-old gentleman in June who arrived here at our office using a wheelchair as a result of full-body CRPS. He contracted the condition after sustaining multiple injuries in an auto accident in 2007. Even after years of extensive pain management therapy, treatments and medication, his pain level remained at a consistent 10/10.

Symptoms of CRPS

Best - both legs before

Untouched original image.

He was experiencing these ongoing symptoms:

  • Widespread pain
  • Alodynia (sensitivity to touch)
  • Swelling
  • Lesions covering his lower extremities
  • Severe sweats.

Patient shares a familiar background

He shared some familiar comments on his New Patient Intake documents:

“My goal is to have pain decreased so I can live a normal life and not be miserable 24/7.”

 “I can never relax—not even for a minute—because of this pain.”

 “I have tried many different meds, endured so many stays in hospitals, inpatient and outpatient rehab and nothing has worked. I am desperate and worried there is no hope.”

Undergoing Calmare’s MC-5A scrambler therapy

After 17 Calmare Therapy treatments, he left our office walking and with 0/10 pain. Keep in mind, most patients undergo the standard treatment regime of 10 daily treatments. Due to the severity and longevity of his condition, he completed an additional seven treatments to ultimately achieve this pain-free condition.

When his pain returned to a 4-5 /10 three months later (September), he returned (still walking without a wheelchair or cane) to undergo nine additional booster treatments and again left at a 0/10 pain. This gentleman is a perfect example of a patient with severe CRPS who required subsequent Calmare booster treatments after the initial treatment.

Calmare is an analgesic, not a miracle cure

Scrambler therapy is not a one-time cure-all miracle. Calmare is an analgesic, a treatment designed to offset (and in the best case scenario) eliminate pain. While many patients undergo the initial 10-treatment therapy protocol and eliminate their pain, others need to return periodically if/when pain returns.

The good news is that many patients can offset this lesser degree of pain with over-the-counter pain relievers while others strive to remediate the pain completely through booster.

Michael Harris - Legs after

Untouched original image.

Finally, this patient generously allowed us to photograph the extensive lesions on his legs before and after treatment. We did not administer any topic creams or medications to the lesions. Simply, as the Calmare Therapy relieved the patient’s CRPS neuropathy, the lesions disappeared as well.

U.S. Military recommends Calmare Therapy for pain treatment

military-logo-header1We reported late last year that the U.S. Military was piloting Calmare Therapy as a new treatment for wounded soldiers at its largest hospitals in the world. To their credit, the Military was one of the first to get on-board with the MC-5A scrambler therapy as a means to alleviate severe pain without the use of invasive treatments or drugs.

Today, the U.S. Military is one of the largest providers of Calmare Therapy in the world. The Calmare device is offered and available at medical centers and hospitals in all branches of service.  Military providers use Calmare to treat several conditions including:

  • failed back surgery syndrome (FBSS);
  • sciatic and lumbar pain
  • phantom limb syndrome
  • pudendal pain
  • post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN)
  • post-surgical neuropathic pain
  • brachial plexus neuropathy
  • lower back pain (LBP)
  • complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS or RSD)
  • cancer-related pain.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this week that Calmare was selected as one of the pain care training providers to our nation’s military personnel. The FDA-cleared, 510-K cleared and CE-marked medical device was highlighted as a “promising pain management device of choice”.

My interview in Entrepreneur Magazine

entrepreneurI was delighted to be interviewed by Entrepreneur Magazine’s health writer, Lisa Evans, for the article, “Four Ways to Eliminate Back and Neck Pain at Work” about how to overcome and avoid spinal pain when your job requires you to sit at a desk all day.

So many people are strapped to the desk in order to make a living. Here’s hoping this can help lessen the pain of the daily grind.

How to know when you need a pain management specialist

By Dr. Michael J. Cooney

back_painChronic pain can sneak up on you.  You’re diagnosed with a disease / condition that causes constant pain and before you know it, months or even years have passed and you are still living in pain and relying on your original treating doctor for pain therapy treatment.

One of the complaints we hear most often from our patients is the fact that they waited “too long” before consulting with a doctor who specializes exclusively in treating neuropathy. Don’t get me wrong – this is certainly not a dig at physicians or doctors in general. Rather, it is a discussion about when the time comes to find a doctor who specializes in your condition and offers a wide spectrum of expertise and resources to help you.

Might you be in this situation?  Here are some guidelines to know when the time is right to find a pain management specialist:

Your pain just won’t go away.

If you have pain that is not significantly minimized after three months.

Family and internal medicine doctors specialize in many areas of healthcare. Pain management practitioners specialize exclusively in resolving acute, chronic and severe pain. Pain specialists are trained to evaluate complex pain problems and have a wide variety of treatment options you may not know about.

You want to stop taking prescription painkillers and utilize alternative treatments which are drug-free, pain-free and have few, if any, unpleasant side effects. 

Pain specialists have a wide spectrum of traditional and alternative treatments to battle several types of neuropathy from physical therapy to acupuncture and newer non-invasive pain treatments.

You are taking more and more medications to treat your pain and it isn’t helping.

Over time, most medications become less effective at decreasing pain (“tolerance”). A pain specialist can help review the medications you have been using and usually find alternatives that can help manage your pain more effectively.

In my case, as a chiropractic physician, we’ll implement therapies that don’t even involve the use of medications, in many cases. (This was my original impetus to introduce Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment to my patients).

You want to know if you have any alternatives to surgery.

Many patients have pain that can be quite severe but view surgery as the last possible treatment alternative. Additionally, some patients’ pain is a result of surgery so they are obviously reticent about undergoing more operations.

Your pain has decreased with treatment but your progress has stopped or stalled.

Increasingly, people are not willing to settle for a life living with “manageable” or “bearable” pain day-in and day-out. Often, patients make steady progress with family doctor-prescribed medications or therapies but reach a point where their pain is no longer lessened.

When a doctor has utilized all the methodologies at his disposal but the pain is still present, it may be time to seek out a pain management specialist.

Don’t we all want to live our lives without any pain? Don’t settle and don’t give up. There are a wealth of viable, high quality treatments to combat many types of neuropathy. Find a doctor who understands the origin of your pain and offers a detailed treatment protocol strategy designed specifically for you.

Once treatment begins, call or email your doctor and give him an update about how you are feeling. Don’t politely wait until your next appointment. If something isn’t working, your doctor can make changes and adjustments. Always remember, as a patient, you are the doctor’s customer.

A young mother with severe RSD tries Calmare scrambler therapy

Jennifer Torres McCarroll with Dr. CooneyJennifer McCarroll, a young mother of two young children, has lived with severe RSD, day-in and day-out, since she was injured 12 long years ago when her wrist was severely injured resulting in an eventual RSD diagnosis. Determined to get her life back, she aggressively underwent a plethora of pain therapy efforts over the years including:

  • Powerful medications
  • Nerve blocks
  • Surgery
  • Spinal cord stimulator
  • Ketamine creme

Unfortunately, she garnered little or no pain relief. After reading about Calmare Therapy on a Facebook RSD Support Group page, she presented to us with a consistent pain level of 10 / 10 and these physical symptoms:

  • Swelling
  • Skin discoloration
  • Severe allodynia (sensitivity to touch)
  • Ongoing cramping

From the start, I explained that the longer a patient has lived with the RSD, the longer treatment results will take, in most cases. After examining her and talking at length about her medical history, I determined Jennifer’s case was one of the most severe RSD conditions I had seen to date.

An Update After 10 Treatments

After treatment #10, Jennifer’s pain is down to 3.5 for the first time in more than a decade. Her physical symptoms have significantly diminished as well ─ she has no more swelling; the skin discoloration is gone; her allodynia is at a mild level and cramping occurs only when she lifts her arms over her head.

Moving Forward

We are continuing this week with five more treatments (11-15) with the goal of achieving 0 pain for Jennifer for the first time since she can remember.

Jennifer shared this public message on Facebook (which meant the world to us) and permitted us to share it here:


I hope everyone will take a minute to read this…

 I have lived with RSD since 2001 you would be surprised how easy it is to hurt your body or damage it. I have seen so many doctors–some tried to help my pain, but as I progressed, most doctors didn’t know what to do.  Some put me through some of the craziest procedures… ,some where more understandable, and some felt it was “all my head”…

I have gotten up for 12 years every day and I suck-it-up and bite the pain because I am a mother.. So when I asked myself, “Did I try everything?” I can say “YES!”

I have lived with a pain level of 10/10 all this time.

I really lost hope believing I could ever be what I call normal (no pain).  Then I read about Calmare Therapy on the Internet.  I figured it couldn’t make me any worse than I already was so I went to Dr. Cooney.

 Now, 10 Calmare treatments later, and I’m feeling about a 3-5 pain level. Dr. Cooney has been doing my Calmare and I think he’s the best (patient, nice, caring). His office staff is really great too. They make you comfortable to be there and for people with high pain (we’re never comfortable no matter where we are)…they make you smile.

Thanks Dr. Cooney!  I love being able to hug my Mom and my kids again which I haven’t been able to do for so, so long.

Thanks Calmare Therapy!

Johns Hopkins doctor / researcher studies Calmare declares he’s a “believer”

national pain report

Dr. Thomas Smith reported today in the National Pain Report that after four long years of studying Calmare scrambler therapy, his findings found:

“We’re not talking about a 10 percent reduction in pain. We’re talking a 50 to 80 percent reduction in pain, which is exactly what one sees with spinal cord stimulation,” says Smith.

 As reported in the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, while Calmare  has been used primarily to treat neuropathy, it  has also been used to treat other chronic pain conditions such as fibromyalgia, phantom limb pain, back pain, and Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome (also known as RSD).

Overall, I thought this report was forthright and finally confirms what we’ve been saying all along. Once we hear good news from the Mayo Clinic study, more people in pain will hear about scrambler therapy and seek treatment. The insurance companies will finally be forced to face the reality of the cost effectiveness of this alternative solution to pain and properly cover this treatment.

Our day is coming.

Reader Request: My POV on the spinal cord stimulator (SCS)

Over the course of the past few years, I’ve been asked about my position on the use of a spinal cord stimulator as a treatment for severe, treatment-resistant pain.  I’m treating a patient this week with an SCS (turned off during the 10-treatment cycle) and received another query last night via Facebook,  so I’ve composed my own personal position statement on the subject, based upon my experience:

spinal cord stimulatorFirst, each patient’s medical condition is unique and the prescribing doctor must use all of his resources to procure the most viable treatment plan offering the best chance of a successful outcome. My opinion is based upon the patients I have treated over the years with these implanted devices.

How Calmare Therapy’s electric transmission differs from SCS
SCS is, at best, a temporary relief. There seems to be about a three to six- month period when it can be optimally effective. The SCS functions like a tens machine which transmits a single current. Conversely, Calmare’s scrambler therapy technology offers 16 different currents which constantly alternate so that no one sequence is repeated during a treatment. This variability prevents the brain from learning to tolerate it (as with the SCS) and therefore will not accommodate to it.

Why is the SCS often a short-term solution for pain relief? The brain will learn to tolerate a single consistent current and ultimately it will be less effective. The SCS is especially tricky for the RSD / CRPS patients due to the surgical implantation involved and the potential for the development of additional pain symptoms after the procedure.

Cost Benefit Analysis
Another practical aspect is the cost of the SCS, which can be more than $60,000, sometimes partially covered by insurance, but often not. To me, when you compare the cost of 10 Calmare treatments ($2,500 total) combined with the fact that it is:

• non-invasive
• has no painful side effects
• doesn’t involve any pharmaceutical use
• cleared by the FDA

It does make me wonder why the SCS garners so much attention.

Many patients using the SCS experience some anxiety when I tell them their device will be shut off for 10 days, which is certainly justifiable. As a Calmare provider, there is nothing better than having these patients later tell me they have no need to turn it back after their treatment cycle is complete.

If you or a loved one has the SCS device implanted and it is not providing the desired results, please contact our office so we can learn more about your medical history, treatment efforts, medication usage and personal experience with your device. From this information, we can mutually determine if scrambler therapy might be a viable treatment alternative for you.

Dr. Cooney is now a columnist on SpineUniverse.com

spine-universe logoI was pleased to be asked by spineuniverse.com to act as one of their columnists. I will be writing about drug-free, non-invasive treatments for chronic pain connected to the back and spine (which includes just about any pain). 

Besides being one of 10 Certified providers of Calmare scrambler therapy, I look forward to sharing some of the therapies I have used with patients in pain as a result of acute injury, chronic disease, post-surgical pain and pain after chemotherapy treatment (CIPN ).

If you’d like to take a look, here’s my inaugural article about the value of music therapy for chronic pain patients http://www.spineuniverse.com/blogs/cooney/tune-turn-down-chronic-pain

Calmare Pain Therapy brings us all together

Welcoming our first patient (RSD) from Australia here this week along with some incredibly inspiring new patients from Florida, Ohio, Penn. and  NJ.

We are treating RSD, post-surgical back pain and diabetic neuropathy.  

imagePatient ages range from 19 to 80. 

Those of us in the office enjoy watching patients and their family members getting to know each other and sharing positive  dialogue. 

Australia meet Ohio.   Florida say hello to PA.

Everyone has a different address, different story of pain, different vision of a successful outcome. But we all have one goal collective goal.

Hello Chronic Pain?   It’s Calmare.   We’re going to get you.

New report shows most doctors treating back pain with narcotics…

Back painTwenty-four thousand patients with spinal (back pain) problems were studied by the highly regarded  Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (MA) and Harvard Medical School. Their new report  (July 29, 2013) findings say that most doctors ignore (or don’t know about) standard clinical guidelines for treatment of back pain and routinely write scripts for “powerful and addictive narcotics instead”.

However frustrating to those of us offering a drug-free alternative therapy to back pain (Calmare scrambler therapy), we can’t help these patients if the doctors are unaware that scrambler therapy is a viable treatment for back pain!

This is expressly why we post videos of patients (and their family) stories and I spend a good amount of time every day on Twitter and Facebook. If we can’t reach the doctors about Calmare, we’ll bypass them and go right to the patients and their families.

I’ll be honest, it’s difficult to think about all the people out there taking these powerful (and debilitating) narcotics because that’s the best solution their doctor could come up with for their back pain. As many of us know, introducing these drugs often just adds to the patient’s troubles — without alleviating or minimizing the back pain.

That’s why we will keep at this, one-by-one, reaching out the to chronic pain community however possible, getting the word out that there are alternative solutions to pain that offer far better results than drugs, drugs, and more drugs.

Science teacher and uncle of chronic pain patient talks about Calmare Therapy

camare foot image with leadsSomeone was kind enough to forward this post they saw on the Internet that mentions me.   I know who wrote it but I am happy to respect he and his family’s privacy. I found his methodology for discovering a drug-free solution for his niece’s pain very forthright and objective. Hope you don’t mind me sharing his point-of-view:

I am a science teacher and got involved in researching options when I heard that my niece was going through this awful pain and was on track to get a spinal cord stimulator.  Since I am very good at researching, I dove in for a few months and started looking for alternatives. Read about ketamin (looked risky), different kinds of drugs (side effects, and don’t address the underlying issue), saw the long term studies on spinal cord stims (the only randomized, controlled study was not so good long term, and it has definite risks for the surgery to introduce new pain sites), and a few others. I saw someone mention Calmare scrambler treatment a few times and decided to look into it. 

Personally, I like going to the controlled, scientific studies that are published in recognized pain journals, especially the Randomized Controlled Tests (RCT’s) that are the gold standard for research. The ones I found for Calmare have excellent results, and a large scale one is due out soon. I also saw that Mayo Clinic and U of Wisconsin Cancer center is using and doing studies with Calmare as well.

I found a radio talk show program “Aches and Gains”, by Johns Hopkins Pain Specialist Paul J. Christo, discussing it (February 16, 2013), and saw several videos with patients who it had been successful for. I started researching the various practitioners to see who had been having a lot of experience with CRPS and choose Dr. Cooney. He was the one I found the most CRPS info for (and he turned out to be wonderful to work with). Anyway, after all of that, I passed on the info to my sister and they decided to go for it. 

As for the TENS being the same/similar, that is not the case. The big differences are in the amount of current being used, and the types of neurons being used to transmit the signal. Calmare just received a patent approval, which required that it was different than a TENS unit, and worked in a different way. I just googled it (patent no. 8,380,317) and it said that it sends the “no pain” signal on the surface C fiber nerve receptors instead of interrupting pain signals through the A-beta fibers like the TENS does. (sorry, the biology teacher coming out….) 

The gist is that TENS intercepts the pain signal, but I believe that when you are not using it, the pain returns (but I don’t have experience with it personally). However, the Calmare signal is providing “no pain” data to the brain using the pathway from the original injury. My hypothesis (this is from other research that I’ve done) is that this gives the brain a chance to realize that there is no tissue damage going on, and therefore doesn’t need to assign pain to it. This then gives the brain a chance to reset/relearn the normal no pain state. 

Anyway, the bottom line is that Dr. Cooney’s Calmare machine brought my niece’s level 8 pain (with meds) down to a 0, and now she can walk normally. Her foot has some muscle and tendon aches because they are being used again, but this is also improving with use.

Again, I recommend that people with crps/rsd look into, talk to a Calmare doctor and decide for themselves.

Another shingles — post hepetic neuralgia — patient has great outcome after Calmare Therapy

shinglesIt’s been another fruitful week here in the trenches of the war on chronic pain. You might recall about six months ago I treated Joan from New York,  a former pharma executive, for post herpetic neuralgia ( PHN ) or shingles, and she experienced a very positive outcome after Calmare Therapy.  She generously wrote a letter about her experience, from a patient point-of-view, which she generously allowed us to publish.

This week, I began treating a male patient in his 70′s, a former physics professor, interestingly, presenting with PHN as well.  He has been suffering with this disease and the ensuing chronic pain since 2007.

When he arrived Monday, his pain level was an 8 to 9 on his right flank.  His stated goal was to ultimately reduce his pain to level 2.  Following today’s treatment (#5), he stated the pain level went from a 4/5 (Friday pre-treatment) to a 1/2 for the first time.  He and his wife were elated, to say the least. And this is only the first week of his 10-treatment scrambler therapy regime.

Coincidentally, the Sydney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center in Baltimore just published results from their own study using Calmare to alleviate pain specifically for PHN pain and and reported an outstanding  95 percent reduction in pain for these patients. Their researchers called for additional testing based upon these promising results. You can read about this study, published by the  National Institutes of Health, here:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23838448?dopt=Abstract

As for my patient, I expect his pain may creep up a bit over the weekend but he has five more treatments scheduled for next week.  We all have high hopes for even more good news ahead.

Wishing everyone a relaxing, low pain weekend.

Calmare Therapy bringing together the global pain community

By Dr. Michael J. Cooney

world-mapLast night, (with the chair next to my air conditioning vent and two fans blowing on me due to the incredible heat wave we’re experiencing…) I was thinking about a patient I am treating this week from Louisiana.


A few years ago, my patients were locals from the Bergen County, New Jersey area.  My sole purpose for introducing Calmare was to offer a drug-free, pain-free alternative treatment just for my own patients who did not respond to PT or chiropractic therapy. (I have been in pain management for a long time and still don’t believe drugs are the solution for acute or chronic neuropathy).

Little did I know that my certification as a Calmare provider would open the door to patients from around the U.S. and even the world. Today, our staff spends a good portion of each day helping out-of-town patients secure travel and local accommodations near our office.  From California to Mississippi, Maryland and Indiana, we have met wonderful people from just about every state.

Then, just this morning, we confirmed our first patient coming next month from Australia.


The MC-5A machine has the capacity to help so many people living in pain every minute of every day. Can it help everyone? Unfortunately, no.  But I am consistently seeing significant decreases in pain levels (as well as pain levels reduced to 0) in 80 percent of the patients I am treating.

Way back when, after I introduced Calmare for my own patients here in my little corner of New Jersey, I had no idea the geographic doors it would open. I am honored.  More importantly, we are more determined (than ever) to get the word out and help people from anywhere and everywhere. Welcome all. Let’s get to work.

When Calmare Therapy links India to Pennsylvania

indiaEven after using the Internet and social media every day for many years, it still never ceases to amaze me. This morning is a perfect example:  I received a message from a physician in India who is using Calmare Therapy for his patients there, with equally successful patient outcomes. He found our practice after watching our patient, Deena Lotridge, share her Calmare story on YouTube

We’ve sent Dr. Kuppusami a response and look forward to sharing a common bond (and clinical experiences) with each other, even if his practice is several thousand miles away.

Unfortunately, the ties the bind that two of us are pain. But, together, on different sides of the world, we fight the battle side-by-side.

Introducing Calmare NJ’s Patient-2-Patient Program

Offered Exclusively at Calmare Therapy NJ

 Many people living with severe chronic pain have tried a myriad of medications, invasive procedures and even alternative treatments without success.

But Calmare Therapy is an FDA-cleared, painless, drug-free scrambler therapy that is truly different.

 And our patients want to tell you about it.

 The “P2P” Program at Calmare NJ: 

man on phoneNow you can get firsthand information about Calmare from other patients just like you. If you are considering Calmare scrambler therapy treatment, we will put you in touch with one of our patient volunteers who was previously treated for the same  neuropathic condition. By phone, email or other private social media resource, you can share your concerns, ask questions, get informed. (Our patient volunteers are not compensated).

It’s that simple. More than 80 percent of the patients we have treated are woman on phone 1pain-free or have reduced the depth of pain significantly. Now these patients want to “pay-it-forward” to others just like them.

Come in and try Calmare with no obligation:

Come in to Calmare NJ and undergo a full treatment (40 to 60 minutes). Many patients actually experience a lessening of pain on the first treatment. If you choose to undergo the remaining nine treatments, this treatment will count as your first of 10 Calmare sessions. If you decide it is not for you, there is no charge for the treatment or the private consultation with one of our doctors.

Next Steps:

Call us at (201) 933-4440 or just complete the Information Form (below) and we’ll put you in touch with one of our doctors who will talk with you about your medical history, medication usage and other therapies you have tried.

If we mutually determine you may respond positively to Calmare scrambler therapy, we’ll put you in touch with one of our patients diagnosed with the same or similar medical condition. Then you can find out, from an actual patient’s point-of-view, how Calmare can make your life so much better.

Pain management physician at Johns Hopkins recommends pharma tech undergo Calmare Therapy for RSD pain

Amy Horwitz headshotForty-six-year-old Amy Horwitz is a bigger-than-life, vivacious, “mover and shaker”. So when complications from a 2010 neck surgery left her immobilized and bedridden, her whole life was turned upside down. She was no longer the care-free, independent woman she used to be. Not only did Amy become dependent on a cane or walker to get around, but her husband had to quit his job to stay home and care for her.

She knew it was time to seek professional help to figure out the source of her never-ending chronic pain. “I felt like I had a boa constrictor going around my legs. I felt pain everywhere from my head to my toes,” Amy explains. “My pain was literally off the charts.”

The former pharma tech is handed scripts for painkillers

Amy's hand before Calmare Therapy

Amy’s hand before Calmare Therapy

Desperate for relief, Amy visited several highly regarded medical specialists, including an orthopedist and a neurosurgeon. But instead of receiving a diagnosis, she was told that her pain was psychogenic (in the mind) and she received a myriad of prescriptions for antidepressants, muscle relaxants and strong narcotics, including the highly addictive Oxycotin. As a former pharmaceutical tech, Amy was well aware of the debilitating side effects of these narcotics, some of which she had experienced firsthand. “I wanted relief─but did not want to live my life dependent on expensive and dangerous pain medications,” says Amy.

Amy and her husband face the source of her chronic pain–head-on

Disappointed but not defeated, Amy took matters into her own hands. With the help of her devoted husband, they conducted extensive research of her symptoms on the Internet and agreed in their mutual self-diagnosis of reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD). She immediately made an appointment with a top RSD specialist at John Hopkins Blaustein Pain Treatment Center. After hearing of Amy’s desire for a drug-free solution to her chronic pain,  her doctor  recommended a newer treatment for pain that tricks the brain’s pain signal and is showing great results for RSD sufferers–Calmare Therapy

Calmare uses a biophysical (using physical methods to treat biological problems) rather than a biochemical (drugs) approach to pain management. It is a pain-free, non-invasive treatment for nerve pain that uses electrodes placed on the skin to deliver a ‘no-pain’ message directly to the nerve. After Amy’s online research turned up numerous success stories from RSD patients treated with Calmare Therapy, she was finally feeling hopeful. She left her home in Maryland and headed to the Rutherford Allied Medical Group in NJ to meet Dr. Cooney, the man with the machine that she hoped would give her back her life.

Amy's hand after treatment.

Amy’s hand after treatment.

When Amy first arrived at Dr. Cooney’s office on May 20, 2013, her pain was a 10 / 10 on the Pain Scale. After just one 45-minute Calmare treatment, she started to feel immediate relief. After nine more sessions, one per day, her pain level dropped to 2 / 10. “The swelling on my hands had gone down and the pain in my legs had significantly improved. I am finally able to move on my own. I can honestly say I feel like myself again for the first time in years,” says Amy. She is still amazed by the fact that she can grab a glass and put ice in it herself. “It is an incredible feat for me,” laughs Amy.

She is very grateful to Dr. Cooney for making it possible. “I can’t believe how lucky I was to have met him,” she says. “He is the nicest doctor I have ever known– caring, considerate, thoughtful, great bedside manner–and most of all–a great heart. I don’t know what I would have done without him.”

Amy starts on her own mission to help others with RSD

While Amy is not completely pain-free, she says she can finally see “the light at the end of the tunnel.” Now she wants other people suffering from chronic pain to see that light as well. She has already referred several patients from her RSD support group to Calmare Therapy and she’s planning to call as many media outlets as she can in Maryland to tell them about this side-effect-free treatment for many kinds of chronic pain.

Amy does not know what her future will bring. She hopes to try yoga and ride a rollercoaster again. But one thing she knows for sure is that, “I’m moving and I’m not stopping  ever again.”

Our Calmare patient shares her summer update

Note from Dr. Cooney:

“I received this message this morning and won’t name the patient to retain her privacy.  She came to us with severe RSD, but had a very positive response earlier this year.  I am going to mention in my letter back to her not to do too much every day and not to worry about scheduling a booster treatment unless her pain comes back!

As you can see, this is not a women who is going to let RSD take her down… This letter is the best way in the world for my week to begin.  I have a great job.”

Hey my favorite group of people!!!! I hope you had a wonderful Father’s Day Doc! I just want to thank you again for the awesome job you do! I can’t tell you enough times that God sent us to you and your magic machine. I am almost off  Lortab; I have weaned myself to a half of a 10 twice a day and have 2 days left, then I start working on the last 4.

Before therapy, I would literally lose days during the week but now I think I am gaining days to make up for lost time :)

Since I have been home, I have only missed Sunday church service twice and can wear my 


heels now too!!! This coming weekend is our grand-daughter’s birthday and I am so excited!! Then the next weekend, I’m going for a 3-day music fest–and rollercoasters!!!

In July, we are taking a weekend to go visit friends–and more rollercoasters!!

August….Jury duty, our anniversary weekend at the beach, our daughter is getting married, plus drag racing in between all that.

In Sept. or Oct., we are coming back to see you for a booster treatment!!! I want to come where I can get a Friday and Sat appt. just to give me a good jump on the cold weather sets in.

OH!! Since I have left Jersey I have lost 20 lbs!!! AWESOME!!!!

Words can never ever express how grateful we are for you and your staff!! I hope you have an AWESOME week!!!!

Calmare Therapy NJ specializing in treatment of RSD and CRPS

During the past 12 months, the volume of patients we are treating for these conditions has quadrupled. As a result, we issued this news release emphasizing that our patient base is largely comprised of people with RSD, CRPS and RND (with patients ranging from decade-long suffering to about a year).

Keep in mind, Calmare has also be very successful treating other chronic neuropathic conditions including chemotherapy induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN), diabetic neuropathy, post-surgical pain and other conditions.


Calmare Therapy NJ specializing in treatment of RSD and CRPS

Calmare Certified Location LogoCalmare Therapy New Jersey, a partner practice with Rutherford Allied Medical Group, is now specializing in the use of Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment for patients living with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) and chronic regional pain syndrome (CRPS). This specialization was announced after marked clinical success treating patients with these treatment and medication-resistant neuropathic diseases.

“We have consistently documented an 80 percent successful outcome rate treating RSD and CRPS patients using scrambler therapy,” says Dr. Michael J. Cooney, a doctor of chiropractic and one of 10 certified providers of Calmare in the U.S. “There are thousands of people living in severe pain every day with these diseases. I believe we can help most of them.”

Calmare, an FDA-cleared, pain-free, drug-free, scrambler therapy, is performed through very low doses of electricity transmitted through 16 different algorithms (electrodes) to disrupt the chronic pain loop message from the brain.

“I traveled 1,000 miles from Mississippi to see Dr. Cooney and try Calmare and it was worth every minute,” says Matt Hannon, a technology manager who contracted RSD in his left foot after a back surgery. “I needed only eight of the 10 treatments because I was feeling 0 pain. Best of all, I am no longer using any pain medication.”

Calmare Technology 2012Rutherford Allied Medical Group, located seven miles from New York City in Bergen County NJ, is comprised of board-certified physicians, chiropractic specialists and physical therapists that treat pain biophysically, without medication. Calmare Pain Treatment Therapy® is an FDA-cleared, non-invasive scrambler therapy proven to help relieve several types of severe chronic pain. For more information, call (201) 933-4440 or visit calmaretherapynj.com.


More patients rejecting doctor-recommended spinal cord implants and painkillers to combat chronic pain

ksl tvOn Friday, June 7, there was a great TV news story from Utah about several  Utah men with chronic neuropathy, foot pain, and RSD who took a chance on Calmare Therapy and finally found substantial relief from severe pain. We’re not sure why there weren’t any women profiled in the piece, but we’ll take any news we can get…) http://www.ksl.com/?sid=25506361&nid=148&fm=most_popular&s_cid=popular-5

News reports, blog articles, research news and patient stories–we will get the word out.  Painkillers? Painful and invasive pain treatments? Your days are numbered.

“Get to Know Calmare” event offered exclusively for podiatrists

Foot stepping legsAs one of just a few healthcare practitioners in the country certified to provide Calmare scrambler therapy, I’ve had the privilege to partner with a variety of physicians ─ physiatrists, family doctors, orthopedists and podiatrists ─ to help their treatment resistant patients overcome neuropathy (when other therapies and medications simply didn’t work).

Many of the patients we help are suffering from lower extremity pain, often concentrated in the ankles and feet. The origins of this pain are varied: trauma and injury; RSD / CRPS; post-surgical pain, diabetic neuropathy and pain from chemotherapy treatment.

As a result, I am inviting podiatrists from the New Jersey / New York metro area on Wednesday, June 19, to offer a presentation of our pain-free, side-effect-free scrambler therapy and explain its benefits to patients with chronic lower extremity pain. We will meet for dinner here in the Rutherford, NJ area and I’ll offer an overview of the benefits of the therapy, what patients and conditions might be suitable for treatment, and answer questions.  I’ll also share some recent patient case studies.

If you are a podiatrist in the New York, New Jersey region, please feel free to call our office at 201.933.4440 and we’ll be happy to provide additional details and reserve seating for you. There is no fee to attend and I look forward to meeting everyone!

Dr. Michael Cooney

Joy from West Virginia wins the RSD war with Calmare Therapy

Last week, I received this update from Joy:

“I have come off of 5 meds so far since my last Calmare treatment. I can’t believe the difference in my clarity. I never really read the side effects of them until yesterday… Thanks again for your magic machine.  The first Saturday I was home, my husband and I took a little hike! He has been so happy with the outcome of the treatments! Okie dokie, keep working your magic!!”

Joy_WV_4.2013Joy is one of those vivacious people who are bigger than life–she has a winning personality and charisma that is off the charts  (her name suits her perfectly). The fact that she’s been living for years with RSD pain in her foot after a fall is unbelievable.

Yet again, her neurologist told her that to minimize the RSD pain she would need a neurostimulator implanted into her spine and a tabletop full of drugs. And, like many,  she simply said, “no.”

Joy came to see me last year to try one Calmare treatment.  I offer this to anyone who I feel may benefit from the treatment. (The first visit is free if there is no reduction in pain. If they feel the relief, then that visit is the first of ten). While patients don’t always experience immediate pain relief, so do. This was Joy’s case. In fact,  she went home after a single treatment (the standard protocol is a 10-treatment series, one per day). But a year later the pain returned and she decided to undergo the full treatment series to achieve longer-lasting pain relief. However, her response early on was so successful that we agreed that eight treatments was enough and off she went back to West Virginia.

She filmed a video here depicting her experience. As you can see, this is not a woman who is going to give up easily. And, thankfully, she left us, wearing her favorite boots again.

Mississippi man says no to more surgery and invasive treatments for his RSD

Since introducing Calmare Therapy, I’ve had the opportunity to meet some spectacular people who I would never have met otherwise. Here’s a perfect example–

It’s not every day that a Jersey City boy (me) meets up with a southern gentleman from Mississippi.  But Matt Hannon heard about Calmare Therapy and came up to see us for five treatments.  He’s a family man and a very bright fellow (some kind tech expert) and chief of the local volunteer fire department. He was also living with a severe case of RSD he could not get off his back.

Medical History:

He was diagnosed by his doctor with RSD in his right foot following lower back disc surgery. He limped and experienced extreme pain after walking about 10 minutes. To get through the day, he took a battery of OTC and prescribed pain medications.

Facing more recommended surgery and/or the implantation of a spinal cord stimulator, Matt took matters into his own hands.  He began Calmare scrambler therapy  May 20 with a pain level of 7/8.  After four Calmare treatments,  he came in with a 2/3 and post treatment (#5) he was a 0/10. 

He shared his experience with us and generously allowed us to share it with you below: 

Matt from MS

R. Matt Hannon

“Had an AWESOME successful week with Doctor Cooney at Calmare Therapy in New Jersey.  I traveled over 1,000 miles each way and it was worth every second and every penny. It has given me my life back. I still have some numbness, tingly and temperature departures but I can definitely deal with this. I have not been able to walk more than 10-15 minutes in 2 years and one day walked over an hour as well as traveling through the airports using NO pain meds! I also met 2 other female patients there who also had success with their RSD this week as well.

Dr. Cooney cares greatly for what he does and is literally changing lives. Kathy in the office was great as well and very kind.

I hope the treatments I had are good for life, but if they are not, I will definitely go back here only. Feel free to comment or inbox me with any questions. This is pain free and risk free, you have NOTHING to risk or lose!

My doctors here wanted me to have more surgery and a neurostimulator.  But I took my health in my own hands and did my research for the best Calmare anywhere. I have no ties to Doctor Cooney and was a complete stranger (coming all the way from Mississippi).

Truth?  I was skeptical because I had tried so many treatments through the years. After the first treatment ,I amazed and even jogged down the hall from the elevator to my room! Again please contact me if you are skeptical and contact Doctor Cooney today. Even my family was skeptical, but this changed my life and I am very grateful!

Thank you all and good luck and God Bless.”

Matt Hannon

Tune in and turn down chronic pain

By Dr. Michael J. Cooney

holding-headphones-listening-to-music-1Everyone knows that lullabies are very effective in soothing babies to sleep. But did you know that just one hour a day of music can be beneficial to adults as well? Multiple studies show that listening to music daily can significantly reduce pain and depression and increase feelings of control. This is great news for people dealing with chronic pain. While ‘zoning out’ to a good song cannot totally eliminate pain (or take the place of quality medical care, of course), it is a safe, inexpensive way for chronic pain sufferers to get some relief and push the pain away for a while.

A natural pain remedy with no side effects
Music provides a safe, natural add-on to pain treatment. Some of the same pathways in your brain that process music also process pain. (We use these same pathways with Calmare Therapy which painlessly scrambles the pain message so that is can no longer emit the pain signal). Focusing on music keeps your mind engaged and triggers emotional responses that compete with pain pathways to lessen pain. In addition, music causes the body to release endorphins, natural painkillers, which can be effective even when traditional pain medications have failed (the same way exercising can brighten your mood and lessen stress).

Just what the doctor ordered
The idea that music can be therapeutic is not surprising to anyone who has ever turned on their favorite song to help them relax after a bad day. Music has been proven to be effective in lowering blood pressure, slowing breathing and heart rate, reducing body tension and relaxing muscles, all of which can ease your pain and lift your spirits. And the best part is that the type of music doesn’t matter. Whether you love classic rock or classical music, pick songs that you have an emotional connection with and you will have the perfect prescription for pain.

About Dr. Cooney
Michael J. Cooney, DC, is a chiropractic physician and medical director of Rutherford Allied Medical Group and Calmare Pain Therapy NJ, located in Rutherford, NJ. The practice is comprised of board certified physicians, chiropractic specialists and physical therapists who treat pain biophysically, without medication. Calmare Pain Treatment Therapy® is an FDA-cleared, non-invasive scrambler therapy proven to help relieve chronic pain. For more information, call (201) 933-4440 or visit http://calmaretherapynj.com/

Our war on RSD continues (thumbs up)

April 30, 2013 

We’re delighted to report not one –but two–positive outcomes in the works with two RSD patients who began treatment last week. They’ve given us permission to share their stories as a vehicle for helping others who may read this (thank you both!).

Let’s begin with Deena from Pennsylvania –


Click image for Deena’s personal story (April 2013).

In 2008, Deena fell on a wet tile floor and experienced hyperextention of the knee with a grade 2 tear of the medial collateral ligament (MCL). A year after her injury, she was diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD).  Treatment efforts for the past three years have consisted of physical therapy, nerve blocks and painkilling drugs such as Gabapentin and Tramadol, with no positive results.

Unable to walk without pain on the right side from the buttock to her foot, Deena has not been able to work or be fully engaged in day-to-day life.

Living in central PA, Deena felt isolated with her chronic pain, but through Facebook, she discovered other people who were also living with RSD.  Over time, she read about several positive experiences with Calmare scrambler therapy, she called the national headquarters for more information she was referred to Dr. Michael Cooney in New Jersey, who has treated many RSD / CRPS/ Fibromyalgia patients.

When she arrived at Calmare Therapy NJ last week, her lower extremity pain level was severe, 10 / 10. After five treatments, her pain has been reduced to a three  at night only at the original pain site (knee). The rest of her lower extremity pain is gone. Her mobility is vastly improved — she has no more limping or pain when walking and has overcome the allodynia (pain when touched).

Deena shares her story here: http://www.youtube.com/edit?feature=vm&video_id=KFkTEr-uz78&ns=1

The Pain Exhibit offers forum for artists living with chronic pain


April 26, 2013

The PAIN Exhibit is an online educational, visual arts exhibit from artists with chronic pain with their art expressing some facet of the pain experience. The mission is to educate healthcare providers and the public about chronic pain through art, and to give voice to the many who suffer in silence http://painexhibit.org/

Many of my patients are socially isolated due to their medical conditions related to chronic pain. As a result, many are incredibly creative artistically and use it as a way to express how they feel.  I could not be more impressed that this forum exists.  I encourage you to take a stroll through their online gallery.

If you have art you would like to share, reach out via this link.

The importance of your Calmare Therapy provider’s expertise

April 12, 2013

By Dr. Michael J. Cooney, Director, Calmare Therapy NJ

Calmare Certified Location LogoI’ve received several patient queries lately about the expertise of the healthcare professional who is actually administering Calmare Therapy.  I’d like to touch on the importance of this question today─

Calmare is a “provider dependent” therapy

The scrambler therapy is performed by a “provider,” the specially-trained clinician who places each of the leads on the patient, sets the voltage, monitors response minute-by-minute and day-by-day, and makes ongoing adjustments based upon the patient’s response. In my practice, I am the provider, 100 percent of the time, from start to finish ─ no exceptions. The administering healthcare professional must have extensive expertisetraining and understanding to accurately diagnose the precise location of the pain site/s. This can be easier said than done.

Why? Because the placement of the leads (patches) which are attached to each of the algorithms must be precisely placed in order to alleviate pain. If these leads are placed in the wrong area, this lessens the overall capability of the Calmare MC-5A technology to optimally perform its job. I have served as a Trainer for the treatment for some new doctors introducing Calmare, and it is a responsibility I take very seriously.

What to look for in your Calmare provider

The most experienced Calmare Therapy providers have received a careful review and on-site examination by the company’s administrators who may or may not designate the top providers as Calmare Certified. I strongly encourage you to seek out these providers for your therapy. Secondly, ask the provider you are considering how many patients they have treated with your specific chronic pain condition ─ back and neck pain, post surgical pain, RSD / CRPS / fibromyalgia, pain after chemotherapy, diabetic neuropathy, etc.

Your Calmare technology will be most successful when your chosen provider has advanced expertise in the placement of each lead. In my opinion, this vitally important task should only be administered by a healthcare professional specifically trained in the diagnosis and treatment of several types of advanced neuropathy.

Calmare patient Terry Whitmyer shares his progress fighting RSD

Image(You may recall, I wrote about one of our recent patients with RSD as a result of two surgical procedures performed during one operation. We had a chat with Mr. Whitmyer earlier this week and were delighted when he offered to share this overview of his medical challenges and firsthand experience with Calmare Therapy. He has kindly permitted us to repost it here. Terry has a remarkable understanding of neuropathy and the very latest treatment alternatives. Please enjoy Terry’s story):

“I am a 70-year-old fit and active senior who elected to have my left shoulder repaired via arthroscopic surgery as well as my left hand’s Dupuytren’s Contracture at the same time on November 17th, 2012. By December, I was experiencing a lot more pain than what would appear to be normal for these surgical procedures. On January 2, 2013, my orthopedic surgeon diagnosed my pain symptoms as being caused by RSD. He prescribed Gabapentin and continuation of physical therapy.
Having a diagnosis for my pain, I started to study RSD/CRPS online and realized I was up against a serious, chronic, life-altering and painful syndrome. Gabapentin was allowing me to get some sleep at night, but really not very much, and it seemed to have too many unpleasant side effects to want to take it around the clock. Besides, I was concerned that it’s anti-convulsive nerve-blocking effect may also inhibit my central nervous system from re mapping my nerves back to a normal connectivity. However, research does not appear to support that assumption. Regardless, in late January, I learned about Calmare Scrambler Therapy and decided it was worth trying to get me off Gabapentin and better allow my body to take advantage of the physical therapy.
I went to Dr. Cooney, Rutherford Allied Medical Group, on February 1st for a trial session and experienced immediate pain relief. After nine more sessions, I appeared to have my pain problem under control. Within a few more weeks, I realized my efforts at physical therapy were also having a positive effect. Soon, I could turn a door knob with my left hand.
I am steadily making progress in my strengthening exercises at the local gym. I did return to Calmare NJ for a booster session on 3/29 as some of my arm and hand pains seemed to be returning. But now, a week later, I am thinking with my continuing physical improvements, I will be able to get this CRPS into total remission by the end of this summer.
Calmare Scrambler Therapy has played a significant role in expediting my recovery.
Thank you Dr. Cooney.
Terry Whitmyer

Melissa, with full body RSD, heads home with 0 pain

April 1, 2013

Melissa from Dayton nj

Melissa on the final day of her Calmare Therapy.

We closed the office to celebrate Easter weekend with the best news imaginable. Melissa, who arrived March 20 with one of the more advanced cases of full-body RSD we have seen, completed 9 consectutive treatments lasting about an hour each. When she presented, her pain level was a consistent 10.

As I stated below after treatment 4, we were making progress but the outcome was uncertain. Having treated many RSD patients, at this point I know precisely where to place the leads according to the pain source.

March 27 – Report after treatment 7: 

At this juncture, the neuropathy in the rest of her body is gone. The ankle pain, the original pain site 15 years ago,  is now at a 4.

March 29 – Report after treatment 9 (she didn’t feel she needed the last treatment and is keeping it as a possible booster, if necessary):

Patient reports 0 pain in ankle and body. Pain level decreased from full-body 10 to 0.

April 1 – Conversation with patient back at home

Melissa was also dealing with gastroparesis {stomach issues} which have also cleared to date. She also reported that chronic swelling of one knee, hair loss and nail beds all also improving.

Keep in mind, due to the severity (full-body RSD) and longevity of her condition (15 years), I expect Melissa to require occasional booster treatments on an as-needed basis. Or, conversely, we may never need to treat her again. Every patient’s pain is unique and the way they heal is not assured.

Nevertheless, the reduction in pain of the original injury site, with the additional elimination of pain throughout the body,  provides a marked success with this young woman.

Thank you, Melissa, for your courage to try Calmare even after all the failed therapeutic efforts before it. You’ve officially come out on the other side. You are winning. You have inspired every member of my team not to give up. To keep going. No matter what.

Dr. Michael Cooney

Calmare Scrambler Therapy vs. Full Body RSD

March 23, 2013

woman in shadow anonymousMelissa, age 28, arrived here from south Jersey for Calmare treatment on Wednesday after suffering from full body RSD for 15 long years. The original injury began in her left ankle after a fall, followed by a second injury as the result of a car accident.  Over the years, her RSD slowly spread until it encompassed her entire body.

She and her husband aggressively sought new pain treatments for RSD ─ a laundry list of drugs, spinal cord stimulators (SCS),  multiple nerve blocks, etc.  Melissa was searching on the Internet for drug-free treatments and discovered one of our patient stories on YouTube. She contacted us and we talked at length about her medical history, treatment efforts and expectations. I shared my experience treating many people living with RSD / CRPS/ RND / Fibromyalgia using Calmare, and we mutually decided to begin treatment.

My strategy is to initiate treatment exclusively on her original pain site, the left ankle. After the first treatment, her Mother became emotional saying the early results were the first positive treatment outcome she could remember.

After Treatment Day 3 (yesterday), Melissa described her pain as “sore” but far from the 8 -10 level reported a few days ago. She noted both arms are receding in pain.

Time will tell. Her case is very advanced and has been in place for more than a decade. As I’ve said before, the longer the period of sustained neuropathy, the longer the treatment process can be. Have I seen exceptions to this guideline? Yes, absolutely. But this is typical.

Melissa’s early positive early signs are encouraging to me.  Her mother is staying here in town with her for week one and her husband will come up for week two. With her permission, I’ll keep you updated on her progress.

Good weekend to all,

Dr. Cooney

Chronic pain sufferers find valuable support from online chat groups

March 20, 2013

chat roomBy Dr. Michael J. Cooney

A colleague shared this article supporting online chat rooms for people living with chronic pain.  For those of us at Calmare Therapy NJ, this is not news. Many of our patients are enthusiastic users of Facebook groups, Twitter and other sites where people living with neuropathy or specific medical conditions can interact and share support. We often join in relevant discussions as well from a healthcare provider perspective.

The caveat, of course, is when non-medical professionals share healthcare information that is one-side on simply incorrect. We have had more than a few patients contact us with mis-information about Calmare Therapy, in fact.

Nonetheless,  my team and I actively join in on some of these online discussion groups because we can often offer clinical information on scrambler therapy and answer simple questions to help patients determine if this therapy (or another) might help minimize the cause of their pain.

My suggestion? Search for some online support groups and read the posts for a while to see if the tone and quality of information suits your needs. If you choose to jump in and ask a question or share your experience, you can maintain your privacy by posting under a username that protects you.

Nearly all the chronic pain support groups have chat rooms. Here are a few groups that we participate in below. If any of our readers would like to share additional recommendations, please do so!

Here to Help – RSD

Surviving Chronic Pain

DailyStrength.org (sign-up required)


Progress to help women in pain is too slow

woman in painMarch 18, 2013

About 25 percent of Americans experience chronic pain, and a disproportionate number of them are women. Women suffering from autoimmune diseases almost doubles that of men.   A report by the Campaign to End Chronic Pain in Women found that inadequate physician training in diagnosing and treating just six pain disorders that affect women either exclusively or predominantly, including fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

I can tell you in my own chiropractic and Calmare Therapy programs, most of the new female patients I see come with a basketful of prescription painkillers prescribed by doctors who don’t know how else to help them.

Here’s an interesting and detailed report in the NY Times on women in chronic pain written by a fellow sufferer.  If I could, I would make sure every physician in America received a copy.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

st patricks day


May we all enjoy a little less pain, a little more luck, and the company of loyal friends and loving family today.

Dr. Michael Cooney

Seventy-years-old is NOT too old for Calmare scrambler therapy

old man's handMarch 12, 2013

I received a query from a senior male asking if he was  “too old”  to undergo Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment. After reviewing his medical history and discussing previous therapies and medications used, I learned that he underwent hand surgery two years ago and endured post surgical pain ever since. His pain eventually resulted in a CRPS diagnosis from his doctor.  He said even in chronic pain, he was still able to drive, but the pain level was increasing progressively and side effects from his prescribed pain medication was making him feel unsteady on his feet and “cranky”.

He is from Monmouth County here in New Jersey. When we met last month, I was surprised to learn that this gentleman was living every day of his long-awaited retirement with an 8/9 pain level.

His neuropathy was concentrated in a very specific area of the hand, so placement of the Calmare leads was relatively direct. After five one-hour treatments, his pain was consistently a 3/4. Much to his delight, he no longer needs to use Gabapentin (Neurontin) which caused ongoing dizziness, emotional confusion and depression.

This isn’t the first senior who has experienced a positive outcome with scrambler therapy and (I hope) it won’t be the last. If you or a loved one is suffering their senior years in pain, I’d be happy to talk with you. Here’s to more happy endings down the road.

Calmare patient celebrates one year pain-free

February 21, 2013Jamie Schmidt

Here’s my favorite 13-year-old, “The Jamster,” a year after his Calmare treatment. 

There are too many wonderful adjectives to describe his mother, Joan.  Leave it to her to commemorate his Calmare treatment anniversary  with a nice butter cream cake and share this event with us!

They are in the midwest or I would have loved to join in the celebration.

Here’s to you, Jamie. Please send cake.

Dr. Cooney takes your questions live on “RSD and You” today!

rsdnad youI am honored to be a guest on Joseph Aquilino’s popular “RSD and You” BlogTalk Radio program today at 3 p.m. eastern time.  It’s a relaxed program format where Joseph and I talk about Calmare Pain Therapy Treatment (he is also a patient with another doctor) and then we open up the phone lines for caller questions.

The call-in number is (310) 982-4253 and to listen live just click http://www.blogtalkradio.com/joeygiggles/2013/02/15/rsd-and-you-show .

If you’d like to join us on chat during the show, you’ll need to first register for the main site at http://blogtalkradio.com/.

If you have questions about scrambler therapy, please feel free to call in. There’s no need to identify yourself if you prefer not to.  Calmare patients are also encouraged to call and share their stories! See you at 3 pm!

Mother of teen with fibromyalgia shares Calmare experience

Katie Salmon(You may recall last year that Pennsylvania teen Katie Salmon came to us after missing months of school due to pain from fibromyalgia after a sports injury. She responded extremely well after Calmare Therapy last Spring. Katie was here for a few booster treatments for the first time since we saw her last spring. Her mother, Sue, sent us the letter below, which explains why we love to come to work every single day).

February 2013

Hi Dr. Cooney,

We cannot thank you enough for your Calmare Therapy. Last year at this time, our daughter Katie was at a constant level 8 pain ─ curled up in a ball of pain, taking ridiculous amounts of pain meds (that did nothing but prevent her from even finishing a thought). This was no way for anyone to live, let alone a 17-year-old. She missed 70 days of school…

Here we are, 10 months after her Calmare Therapy and she has her life back! Katie’s senior year in high school has been fantastic. She is president of her class, active in our church, attends football games, dances and is captain of her school’s Red Team.

Amazing. She is headed to college next year and looking forward to her future.

Words cannot express our gratitude to you and your staff for giving Katie her life back! Hope you are all doing well. We think of you often.


Sue Salmon

Kenley’s RSD story and Calmare treatment


Click to view Kenley’s story.

February 8, 2013

I mentioned a few weeks ago about Kenley arriving here in New Jersey from her home in West Virginia wheelchair-bound as a result of her lower extremity RSD. She was also living with severe pain hovering in the 8 -10 pain scale range.

While she was with us for 11 treatments, she charmed us all and brought tears to our eyes when she pushed her own wheelchair out of the office after treatment number 7.

Kenley will require occasional booster treatments due to the severity of her condition.  Our goal is for her to be able to extend the length of time between treatments longer and longer.

This brave and inspiring young woman has generously shared her emotional story with us by video and we are most appreciative to her for telling her personal story. She left a big impression on all of us.