Early studies show an implanted device that sends electrical signals to the brain via the vagus nerve has potential as a new therapy for rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
The vagus nerve travels from the brain stem to almost every organ in the body to keep them operating within normal, healthy levels. The vagus nerve is part of the parasympathetic, or involuntary, nervous system. Stimulating the vagus nerve can cause changes in heart rate, blood pressure, brain activity, and mood.
For more than a century, doctors have used techniques called vagal maneuvers, such as deliberate coughing, help slow a rapid heart rate. In the ...more