Quantcast

Anyone one use the Exogen 4000 Bone Healing system?

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by Alloy, Jun 8, 2008.

  1. Alloy New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    thousand oaks, ca
    Since I broke my ankle I was looking into these things. Most people say they made them heal much faster and they're especially good for schapoid injuries that are stubborn to heal.

    I did read one complaint where a guy said it hurt to use and made him black and blue. ...Also he said he had pins and plates.

    I have a couple pins, so I'm wondering if it only works on non surgical fractures? Have any of you guys used one of these?

    Check them out here.


    http://global.smith-nephew.com/us/ABOUT_EXOGEN_7227.htm
    #1
  2. Cult Hero New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Santa Barbara
    Bone Growth stimulators are designed to mimic the low level radio freq that broken bone emits to encourage increased blood flow the injury site. The smith and nephew device is the only one that uses ultrasound technology as opposed to pulsed radio freq's.

    The problem with the exogen is that it has to be applied directly to the skin and therefore windowed through the cast if there is one. All others work with radio waves so are less invasive and messy.

    As you have probably guessed I am in medical device sales and sell a bone stim made by Orthologic. 30 minutes a day application as opposed to the others that require a lot more time.

    The reason they are good for scaphoid fx's is that the scaphoid has a low blood supply naturally so doesn't heal that well. The bone stim can help with this.

    Bone stims are used with any non healing or surgically repaired bone.

    I see you live in TO, my territory covers SLO to Camarillo, what dr are you seeing?
    #2
  3. Dylan Dean New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2007
    Messages:
    608
    Location:
    southern California
    i used something similar (more hi tech industrial type version) when i snapped my ankle, but although i never had a true "cast" i wasn't able to use it until i started my physical therapy. I've heard good things about 'em from some people... but i personally never really saw a vast improvement. it's most likely because my ankle was so severely jacked up that it took extra long for things to heal (i had about 9 screws & a long plate installed), so even if it sped things up... i really didn't notice.

    it never bruised me up... but turn it up too high & you get some interesting muscle twinges! :D
    #3
  4. fellow pinner New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    May 18, 2007
    Messages:
    159
    Location:
    over there
    it works with collerbones.
    #4
  5. ChrisKring New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2002
    Messages:
    2,388
    Location:
    Grand Haven, MI
    I asked my Orthopedic surgen about it last year when I broke my Fibula. He said that he often used them with elite athletes (as in high paid pro basketball and football). He claimed that it would cut the healing time in half. For me, that would have taken it from 6-8 weeks to 3 weeks. The price: $3-5k. It was tempting but not worth it since I didn't ask about it until after 2 weeks. The reason that I asked about it was that my bone had not reconnected and I could still feel it moving. I was worried it wasn't healing. The Ortho convinced me that it was normal. The only thing I did was follow his advice of a big calcium suplement (TMI, but you will only crap about twice a week) and getting a lot of sleep. I started rehab'ing it at about 5 weeks following his advice.

    I was near 100% bone structure in 6 weeks. I actually rode my MX bike 6 weeks to the day after I broke it at the US Open. Straight from the Ortho's office to the track. Took me another 4 weeks to get on the DH bike due to the lack of support in my shoes.

    I think I made the correct choice to save the cash. Now if your not healing or are looking at a much longer recovery, I would consider it if you have the $$$.
    #5
  6. Alloy New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    thousand oaks, ca
    Sweet I just picked one up on ebay for $200! Now I should be back in a month.

    For the rest of you cripples, ebay has a few more...

    Forgot, Did you have pins or metal in your leg when the doctor told you this?
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2008
    #6
  7. Cult Hero New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Santa Barbara
    Do not buy from Ebay. These things are not reusable and once they are activated they will work for a limited time then be no good anymore. BAsically once you turn it on for the first time you have about six months of usage before it is useless.

    A bone stim will be paid for by your insurance when their is documented (X-rays) of the non-union for more than 90 days. They are meant to help with people who are not healing.

    If you are healing I wouldn't worry about it.

    Please don't buy that thing off ebay, it is probably waaaay expired and won't do you any good.
    #7
  8. big-ted Danced with A, attacked by C, fired by D.

    Rep  |  Likes:
    2   |   6
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2005
    Messages:
    1,261
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    Interesting stuff. Care to elaborate on why they have limited useful lifespan? Are they powered from some non-replaceable battery? I can't see why an RF transmitter wouldn't continue to be such providing it continues to have power...
    #8
  9. Cult Hero New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Santa Barbara
    it is a propriatery manufacturing thing. The device is intended to be worn at the same time every day for 6 months. (keep in mind, these are "intended" to heal people whose bodies aren't doing it for them, not speed up those whose bodies are).

    By putting the device on the same time every day you are basically supplimenting your bodies healing process and giving it a kick start.

    The device is a single patient use, as is the majority of medical devices and once it is turned on a timer starts a count down. It is meant for the user to whom it was prescribed and that is all. It is not meant to be shared as it is a medical device that requires the monitoring of a physician.

    These things do have contraindications that make it necessary for your dr to be aware that you are using one.

    On another note, the ultrasound technology is heat generating. HEating up metal in your body can be uncomfortable. I am not familiar enough with the exogen system to know how they handle it but it could be why your buddy had bruising.


    forgot to add. by buying a used one you have no idea when it was started and therefore have no idea how much life is left in it.

    These things really work when used with discipline, once or twice a week or every day for two weeks - month will not really do anything for you.

    Without getting into the details of O.R.I.F's osteocytes, osteoblasts and cascading effects just trust me. Buying medical devices off ebay equals really bad idea.
    #9
  10. max123 New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2006
    Messages:
    145
    I used boiron homeopathic medicine called symphytum oficinale. I can't tell if it works yet but it cut the healing time for my friend in half. s
    #10
  11. Alloy New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    thousand oaks, ca
    My medical choices are usually questionable. But if you never try it you'll never know. So if I have a chance at salvaging some riding this summer I'll take it!

    ... are you specifically talking about the Exogen 4000?

    I did do some reading and found out they have 300 to 400 uses and have a indicator to show how much they have been used up. I didn't see anything about a timer. Most of the ones on ebay state how much they have been used. Some say they have been tested and are working. Also I heard this is the only one that works on fresh bone fractures.

    But whatever... it's 2008 it's about fcking time they came out with something that speeds up healing!
    #11
  12. Cult Hero New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Santa Barbara
    it is the only one that is FDA approved for fresh fx's. They all do the same thing in different ways but the FDA chose this one for fresh fx's. They chose another one for cervical bone healing. They all do the same thing in just different ways.

    I wish you luck, I just would set your expectations low. How long have you had a fx? When was it pinned compared to broken?

    In regards to the timer. It isn't something published, it is a business thing that device manufactures do so that there isn't just one bone stim floating around that people keep passing around when they need it. We want to sell more of them!

    good luck
    #12
  13. Alloy New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    thousand oaks, ca
    Yeah you medical guys are pretty shady:biggrin:

    I broke it a week ago from today. Had surgery last Tuesday... I had 3 fractures, two needed pins, one didn't. So if it doesn't work with pins, at least I'll have it for the one that has no metal. If it doesn't turn on, I'm sending it back!

    I'll let you know if it works. ...I just have this quest to figure out how top athletes heal so fast. No one seems to want to talk about their special methods that aren't available to the public.
    #13
  14. 1000-Oaks New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    1   |   0
    Joined:
    May 8, 2003
    Messages:
    778
    Location:
    Simi Valley, CA
    You could sell it to SMT when you'e done with it.
    #14
  15. Cult Hero New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Santa Barbara
    no worries. There are lots of things that top athletes do to heal quick. Really aggressive PT is one of them. Taking things to a point past where most people quit. To be quite honest Bone Stim is not on the short list.

    If you want a crash course take a look at this article on Dennis Dixon of the ducks.

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/the_bonus/04/11/dixon/index.html

    You have to approach your healing the same way you approach your training which in the eyes of elite athletes is all or nothing.

    Good luck with your break. If you are a relatively healthy individual and don't do anything to compromise the healing (smoking, obesity, excessive drinking etc) you should be just fine.
    #15
  16. JSavill New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1
    I'm just trying to buy one of these of Ebay now as my UK insurers are refusing to cover it (dont go there, we dont get the same deal as you guys seem to there) but my consultant is happy for me to use a second hand one as he uses them a lot and says it is just the number of uses that is limited.

    I just wondered how you got on with it as I've been on crutches with a broken Tib/fib for the last 9 months and now have a non union of the tib (had an external fixator for 6 months) so hoping this is going to work - they apparently have a money back guarantee so Smith & Nephew must be pretty confident
    #16
  17. seth505 New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    521
    Location:
    CA
    I used a bone stimulator when I broke my leg and got to use it for free...I can't remember the name of it for the life of me though. This one was pretty large and I actually velcro'd it around my leg
    #17
  18. frorider Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   1
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2004
    Messages:
    939
    Location:
    cali
    umm, yeah. So clearly the device itself 'could' be used for a long time, and for many patients, but the timer 'odometer' was installed to help prop up profits.

    given the fact that hackers unlocked the first gen iphones so easily, i'm gonna go out on a limb and say it would be pretty easy to unlock these bone healing devices.
    #18
  19. sethmatch New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    just in case someone is still watching this threat (JSaville) .. I am in the same boat. In the UK, have a delayed/non union tibia fracture with IM nailing.. at 4 months now with little / no visible callus on xray. Contemplating buying an exogen 4000 (online possibly).

    Love to find out how you went - including with the ebay purchases..
    #19
  20. snutty New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2004
    Messages:
    162
    Location:
    Oakland in da house
    i broke my collar bone and for the longest time it was not healing, finally the doc recommend the exogen 4000. with in a 2 weeks of using it all of a sudden my collar bone started getting better. I HIGHLY recommend it.
    #20
  21. Toshi Harbinger of Doom

    Rep  |  Likes:
    27   |   30
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2001
    Messages:
    17,271
    given the fact that iPhones are a widely available commercial product and many people have an interest in unlocking them it's not surprising that someone figured out how to do so.

    a proprietary bone stimulator that most people get gratis via insurance if they have a legitimate need is not comparable. good luck getting the "hacker community" to unlock one.

    :twitch:
    #21
  22. jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

    Rep  |  Likes:
    42   |   82
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2005
    Messages:
    36,783
    Location:
    alcoholics unanimous
    make sure you try it in conjunction with the Chuck Norris Bone Breaking System™
    #22
  23. yakuzafreerider New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    May 22, 2006
    Messages:
    55
    Location:
    waynsesboro va.
    I have an exogen unit as well, insurance paid for all but $250. It has 300 uses on it before it is dead, then you have to send it back to get it recharged for more uses with a provided shipping envelope by the manufacturer. Thats why I wouldnt buy one off ebay, now if I break anything else I can use this thing over and over again for my money spent. If you buy it on ebay you may have a 100 or even 10 uses left on it and no way to ship to the manufacturer for a recharge which the company will verify if you were a legit customer.
    #23
  24. rockofullr confused

    Rep  |  Likes:
    1   |   0
    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    Messages:
    4,848
    Location:
    East Bay, Cali
    Used this exact product on a broken fibula (sp?). At first the bone was not healing very quickly (low blood flow bone) so the Doc. gave me one of these. I didn't feel a thing and the bone finished healing normally!

    I'm no doctor but it seemed pretty good to me.
    #24
  25. jurichik New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    You seem to have some knowledge about this device. Is there any advantage of using the device more than once a day? Is more better?
    #25
  26. misterdna New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    I know this is an old post, but I can't help but take the other side of this argument. I am actually using an Exogen 4000 as I type this (treatment #16). From everything my Exogen rep told me, this thing will last for several hundred treatments (the only limit is the battery life). I will likely only use my Exogen for 60 treatments (two months). You're telling me to just throw it away, while someone else could get benefit from it? I disagree. These machines give total visual feedback as to how many times they have been used, count down for each use, and basically make it very clear they are functioning (once the battery dies, it will be very clear it is not functioning). If the display says a relatively low number of prior uses, and the display says the unit is working when you start a treatment, then I think you can feel fairly certain the device is working just as well as a brand new machine. At least that's my opinion.

    I am lucky enough to have good insurance, but for someone who doesn't have insurance to cover the thousands of dollars for one of these, I don't think it's unreasonable to buy one on eBay at a fraction of the cost. Of course,like any eBay purchase, investigate the seller's history and make sure the condition of the product is suitable before making a bid.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2009
    #26
  27. Alloy New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2004
    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    thousand oaks, ca
    I feel inclined to make a quick update.

    I ended up buying the Exogen 4000 on ebay for 200 or so. I used it for 6 weeks on a broken ankle, it worked fine. I went back to the doctor and xrayed my ankle to find all the bones were nicely healed. The ligaments were badly damaged and those took longer to feel normal. But now a year later, I'm perfectly fine.

    The bone healer still had some uses on it when I was done, so I gave it to my buddy with a scaphoid injury. It was now over 10 months since I bought it. He ended up using it for 4 weeks and his wrist healed fine. Right when the cast came off we went and rode Whistler for 3 weeks and he was not complaining.

    So after this I think what Cult Hero really meant to say is " Don't buy one on Ebay when you could buy one from me!" In other words buy one off Ebay, they work just as good.
    #27
  28. misterdna New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    On page 5 of my manual (which you can download from the mfg website), it says the lithium battery has a minimum of 150 treatments. Since I expect to only use my Exogen for 60 treatments, sounds like it would be silly to not sell it for someone else to use.

    Here's the bad news, at least in my case. Looking at page 28 of the manual, only 2 of 6 patients had their scaphoid heal with the machine. No wonder my surgeon said the machine wouldn't hurt, but it may not do much to help, either. Meanwhile, the stupid Exogen rep kept saying how the machine had a 90-something-percent heal rate. I don't know if she was just holding back that the high percentage healing was on bones other than mine, or if she didn't even know enough about her product. I kept wondering why the rep said it helped so much, but my surgeon said it may not help one bit. Now I see it's because the surgeon was being real, and the Exogen rep was kinda giving me a snow job.
    #28
  29. cableguy Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Southern California
    My hand surgeon said the same thing. Nothing out there has been scientifically shown to heal scaphoid injury faster.
    #29
  30. Brian HCM#1 MMMMMMMMM BEER!!!!!!!!!!

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2001
    Messages:
    31,182
    Media:
    2
    Location:
    Bay Area, California
  31. misterdna New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    So, what happened in your case? My surgeon told me 65% chance of success, but then right before I went under the knife, he let me know he had reduced it to 50-50 (due to consulting with other surgeons). I will be seeing him next week at 6-weeks since the surgery, and I guess x-rays will give us a clue if the bones are healing right (I have a bone graft from my hip).

    BTW, to those who are reading this thread and haven't been told by your doctor use one of these devices, don't just go buy one on ebay assuming it will help in your case. My understanding is some situations call for one of these, and some don't.

    Oh, jurichik, the Exogen manual says expressly to only use it once each day, preferably at approximately the same time each day, and never twice within a 12 hour period (note the Exogen automatically only goes for 20 minutes per treatment). So I would guess they figured out what they think will give the best results, and that more than once a day might do harm.

    And when Cult Hero says "The problem with the exogen is that it has to be applied directly to the skin and therefore windowed through the cast if there is one. All others work with radio waves so are less invasive and messy." My cast has a nice "port" built in where the Exogen transducer goes, it hasn't seemed messy or invasive at all.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
    #31
  32. cableguy Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Southern California
    My surgeon saw the x-rays, and went with the conservative approach, and the bone started healing after 2 months. Took 4 months altogether to heal completely. Then another month to rehab. Mine broke right in the middle, so it was 50-50 whether it would heal on its own or not. But that 1st 2 months really s*cked as the x-rays showed no signs of healing.

    I have a friend who's first surgery didn't work (pin/screw + bone graft). He found a second surgeon who uses stem cells instead of bone grafts. Now he's riding after a year, although his wrist is still not 100%. My surgeon didn't really know about the technique. If you are not happy with your surgeon, be aggressive about finding doctors who are at the forefront of new surgical techniques. Definitely get 2nd opinions. Scaphoid bones are very difficult to heal.
    #32
  33. davec113 New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    May 24, 2009
    Messages:
    420
    I managed to break my arm this summer, and after research decided to take vitamin and mineral supplements. I use a calcium supplement, a general mineral supplement with a bunch of trace minerals in it, and a mineral supplement made by NOW that is a suspension of minerals derived from humic shale, and finally an antioxidant/vitamin supplement. The head of my Radius (near the wrist) broke off and also shattered into 3 pieces, so I had pins and a plate. 6 weeks after the surgery you can't see the fractures on x-ray. It still needs a lot of work to get back to 100% though.

    I went for my first ride on dirt in 2 months today. It is going to suck to whip my a$$ into shape.
    #33
  34. misterdna New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2009
    Messages:
    4
    Sounds like we had very similar fractures, mine also broke right in the middle. My injury was two years before they discovered the break (my original doctor misdiagnosed the painful wrist as a sprain -- stupid doctor should have referred me to an orthopedic specialist).

    So, I had my 6 week visit yesterday (and finally got my stinky cast off!), and I was ecstatic to hear the surgeon tell me the x-rays looked much better than he had expected. I see him again in 3 weeks (I'm wearing a removable splint now), and hoping at that point I'll be given the okay to start using my wrist again. Though you mentioned a month rehab, so maybe I'm in for that too (I could even be in for another surgery, to fix up a related tendon).

    I'm doubting the Exogen had much to do with the bone healing (since it appears two surgeons don't think it does much for scaphoids, nor does the literature on the product), but who knows? I jogged regularly once I was up for it after surgery (it took a couple of weeks before the hip pain subsided enough), and I wonder if getting the blood moving helped at all with the poor circulation of the wrist. Funny, the guy at the doctor's office who put the cast on me said not to work out, because the sweat would make the cast stinky. How crazy is that, worrying about making the cast sweaty over trying to do whatever possible to make this big surgery a success?!

    BTW, I just got a surprise bill from Smith&Nephew, who make the Exogen 4000. While my rep originally told me my insurance was covering it all, this bill says I owe them $250! Now it's time to ask my rep WTF? Also, the invoice says the list price of the 4000+ is $4500, but they gave me (or my insurance company) a $2250 discount.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2009
    #34
  35. gemini2k Active Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    5   |   5
    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    Messages:
    3,250
    Location:
    South Bay
    HGH. Seriously. Only possible way. No reason for top football/basketball etc. palyers not to.
    #35
  36. cableguy Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Southern California
    Good for you that x-ray's came out good. Nothing like that feeling. My wrist is still not 100% after 3 months. Good enough to ride Northstar and Mammoth, but compared to my other wrist, strength/flexibility is still not there.

    By the way, my surgeon did not say Exogen doesn't work. He did say there is no widely accepted scientific evidence that it works. It may or may not do anything, but as you know in the medical world, you got to do lot of testing in controlled manner to show it that it has healing properties. Unless Exogen does this kind of study, most doctors won't buy Exogen's claim. He said the same thing about taking Glucosamine. He also said it probably wouldn't hurt using Exogen either.
    #36
  37. krzmar969 New Member

    Rep  |  Likes:
    0   |   0
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Messages:
    1
    I am interested if someone found out how to restart this device. I used it for 150 cycles with great results but it is not enough for me. They said that the battery is not-replaceable but it isn't true! you can do it yourself but it doesn't solve the problem. I think it must be reprogrammed to restart work. Is anybody who figured out how to restart it?
    #37