What's the Deal with This New Cefaly Thing the FDA Approved?

Ask the Clinician Health Pro
  • Full Question:

    What's the deal with this new Cefaly thing that the FDA approved? I keep seeing different information. Is there one of them or more than one? Is it just a TENS unit? Is it worth trying? If I just want to look like Wonder Woman, I can buy a costume for less . Thanks, Eleanor.


    Full Answer:

    Dear Eleanor;


    All good questions. Yes, you can go find a Wonder Woman costume much less expensively, but I don't think it even has a chance of helping with your Migraines. Love your sense of humor!


    The FDA classified the Cefaly as a TENS unit, but it is not like any other TENS unit. This is vital to understand because using "regular" TENS units on the neck, head, or face isn't safe. The Cefaly is actually an external trigeminal nerve stimulator (eTNS). Unlike TENS units, it's designed to affect only the trigeminal nerve and at a different and safe level.

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    There is one unit that's available in Canada and Europe and a somewhat different one that the FDA approved for use in the U.S. You can find a more complete explanation of that as well as other information in Cefaly for Migraine - Answering Your Questions, Sharing My Experience.


    Keep that sense of humor going. It can certainly help us through some trying times.


    Thanks for your question,
    John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert



    About Ask the Clinician:

    Dr. Krusz is a recognized expert in the fields of headache and  Migraine treatment and pain treatment. Each week, he and Lead Expert Teri Robert, team up to answer your questions about headaches and  Migraines. You can read more about Dr. Krusz or more about Teri Robert.


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    Last updated April 17, 2014.

Published On: April 17, 2014