Pain Care Labs announces expansion of rheumatic fever prevention study in Uganda with Buzzy as standard of care

NEJM-published study shows monthly penicillin injections halted rheumatic fever progression. Buzzy was standard of care, ensuring compliance with the trial.

ATLANTA, GA, UNITED STATES | 17 January 2022

In a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Andrea Beaton proved that monthly injections of penicillin halted rheumatic heart disease progression. Buzzy was the standard of care for injections for all patients, a critical part of ensuring compliance with the study. Upon learning about the study, Pain Care Labs donated over $12,000 of its pain-relieving products to expand Dr. Beaton's critically important research. 

“The GOAL trial showed that a monthly injection of penicillin protects children with early rheumatic heart disease from getting worse,” explains physician-scientist Andrea Beaton, MD, of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. “But penicillin injections are very painful. Buzzy was instrumental in reducing pain for children in this trial, helping us deliver nearly 100% of these injections on time.” 

When untreated strep throat lodges in the heart, it causes rheumatic fever, leading to valve defects and early death. “Monthly injected long-acting penicillin can keep the heart from long-term damage, but the shots can lead to fear and pain,” explains Amy Baxter, MD. “In New Zealand, Buzzy is on national guidelines to help patients take the shots, so a heart doctor from my residency decided to use Buzzy for a study in Uganda. When she needed more units to provide heart protection to more children, we were compelled to help continue the research." 

When Dr. Beaton found out about the donation, she asked the team in Uganda for a few pictures. The children were so excited, they created a skit and sent pictures of their new best friend, Buzzy. Dr. Baxter was so touched, she included stickers and distraction materials for the children. “Knowing we were standard of care halfway around the world, helping prevent pain and heart disease in children was humbling,” said Dr. Baxter. “I still get a thrill of joy every time I think about it.” 

Most of the 75+ studies supporting the efficacy of Buzzy have been conducted by independent scientists. The Company is often unaware of a trial until after it has been published. This trial is unique because, in addition to being conducted independently, it is technically not a “Buzzy” trial. Rather, Buzzy was incorporated into the fabric of the trial so that patients remained compliant while in the trial.

In the US, drug manufacturers and laboratories have incorporated the Company’s products into their protocols and patient starter kits. For many hospitals, Buzzy is the standard of care for needle pain management. Currently, Pain Care Labs is federally funded to develop and investigate a low back pain device to reduce opioid initiation or dependence. 

ABOUT PAIN CARE LABS Pain Care Labs is the industry leader in non-invasive pain relief solutions. Buzzy® has been used to block pain from over 37 million needle procedures. VibraCool® is an FDA-cleared device to treat myofascial pain caused by trigger points, restricted motion, and muscle tension. Established in 2006 by emergency physician and pain researcher Amy Baxter MD, the Company is dedicated to effective, reusable, affordable solutions to pain. The Company's award-winning solutions are based on a patented M-Stim™ neuromodulation platform to give serious, simple relief, supported by over 75 independent clinical trials. Pain Care Labs was named "Industry Leader for Localized Pain Relief" by Frost & Sullivan, the most prestigious medical device consulting firm. For more information visit

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