San Antonio, TX – October 8, 2020 – HiccAway, a new patent-pending scientific device that stops hiccups without drugs or surgery, has been launched by Dr. Ali Seifi, M.D., associate professor of neurosurgery and director of the neurological intensive care unit (Neuro-ICU) at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas. The drinking straw-like device was developed by Dr. Seifi after working with patients suffering from hiccups due to neurological injuries.
“We’re very excited about HiccAway and its ability to stop hiccups in a wide variety of patients,” said Dr. Seifi. “Hiccup severity can range from mildly annoying, when they last for short periods, to debilitating, and can interfere with sleeping, eating and even breathing. We’re very happy to provide an effective and inexpensive way to stop them,” he added.
A hiccup is an involuntary contraction or spasm of the diaphragm, the muscle separating the chest and abdomen and having an important role in breathing. When the diaphragm goes into a spasm, it forces air into the lungs, and the epiglottis (the leaf-shaped flap in the throat that keeps food out of the windpipe when we swallow) snaps shut, making the sound we recognize as hiccups.
Patients with cancer, diabetes, gastrointestinal diseases, neurological disorders, those who are undergoing chemotherapy or recovering from surgery, and alcohol drinkers are particularly prone to suffering from hiccups, which may repeat several times per minute. Hiccups can sometimes last hours, days or even years, and it is estimated up to 27 percent of patients in palliative care may experience them, according to the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management.
According to Dr. Seifi, neurologists have determined that hiccups can result from damage or irritation to the vagus and phrenic nerves that innervate the diaphragm. Dr. Seifi actively worked for years to simplify a method to stimulate the phrenic and vagus nerves simultaneously, in hopes of stopping the spasm. After many prototypes, Dr. Seifi created HiccAway.
HiccAway works by generating enough pressure to lower the diaphragm while first opening and then closing the epiglottis. When the person with hiccups drinks water through the HiccAway device, this action simultaneously stimulates the phrenic and vagus nerves, allowing the brain to reset the nerves and stop the involuntary spasm of hiccups.
Dr. Seifi and the University of Texas filed a provisional patent for HiccAway in 2018, and a Continuation in Part (CIP) in early 2020. HiccAway is dishwasher-safe and was designed and manufactured in the United States using plastics that are BPA-, BPS- and BPF-free.
HiccAway is sold in packages of one and two units. The retail cost is $14 for one device, and $25 for two. HiccAway is now available on the HiccAway website (www.hiccaway.com) and on Amazon, Amazon Canada, Amazon UK and Walmart.com. Contact HiccAway for information about wholesale pricing.
HiccAway is a safe, drug-free scientific device that stops hiccups. Developed by Dr. Ali Seifi, M.D., associate professor of neurosurgery and director of the neurological intensive care unit (Neuro-ICU) at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, HiccAway is now available for retail sale. For more information about HiccAway, please visit our website at www.hiccaway.com or call (720) 279-9788.
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