A big pain in the ... arm


Looking for a new product area to delve into? I have two words for you: pain management.

You see, I have been dealing, most likely—there's no definitive diagnosis—with adhesive capsulitis, otherwise known as frozen shoulder. Bascially, there's a membrane that covers your shoulder joint and all the muscles and so on in that area that starts to "freeze up." It hurts and it limits my range of motion. THEY don't know what causes it, nor why it's more common in folks with diabetes.

It started out innocently enough: I awoke one morning in June with a sore shoulder and thought I might have slept on it wrong. It got worse from there. By the time of my August vacation, I could no longer sleep through the night, due to pain and the inability to get comfy. Sleep interruptus is indeed a common sign of this condition. There are few options for treating the condition, which typically resolves itself—in about 18 MONTHS??!! Not only cannot I not lift, lean or sleep with my left side, there are days I can't lift a cup of coffee or pull open the fridge door. Getting dressed is a challenge and forget about being able to easily pay at the toll booth. To the left, to the left is not a phrase my left arm recognizes.

So, as I wandered around Medtrade my thougths were on pain management. Options range from stick-on heat pads to cold packs to TENS devices to all sorts of little gadgets in between, including this nifty roller, the Tiger Tail, that several of my coworkers purchased. It's good for getting the kinks of overworked necks, shoulders and backs. You know, areas that can also lead to chronic pain. 

I talked to the folks at LED Technologies about their DPL Therapy systems. I started out by saying, "Are you familiar with frozen shoulder?" Turns out they'd just fielded that question from someone else. I didn't get to try their product (it works best on bare skin, I prefer to keep my clothes on in public) but it sounds like they had tried out the system on this other women and she was able to get her arm much higher in the air. If you have ever had shoulder problems you will understand what a beautful notion that is. At around $150, it wasnt something I could afford last week, but that doesnt mean I won't consider it or something similar if this doesn't get better soon.

In fact, this recent article says there are about 100 million Americans that suffer from some form of chronic pain. That's a lot of people looking for relief, and like me, probably willing to pay for it. http://www.sacbee.com/2012/10/21/4928188/new-pain-test-that-stratifies.html

Theresa Flaherty


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National Therapeutic Services Inc. is a nationally recognized drug rehab center offering mental health and addiction services in Orange County California. Start living sober today.

Hi Theresa, Im a mfr rep and try to bring some new and different items to DME's.  I carried some pain management products to DME's a while back and found that few wanted to "get into that" - Their reasoning was that reimbursements are tough, and documentation for them is very time consuming given the profits on them,  So, apparently this means thinking more about it as a retail oppportunity;  in that case I am told that  the standard Pain management stuff which is available for cash sales are either puny margins with competition on the internet, and those that arent  dont sell regularly enough.  For example, even you demonstrated in your blog that wa $150 product not able to be purchased. Thats the only experience I have with pain management stuff in DME- but maybe theres someone  out there,with some education or info that would help  get over this hurdle.  Incidentally I hope your shoulder will resolve, mine did - but one thing I had to do was stop sleeping on it. We even got a new bed and that helped, believe it or not.