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Livia

Livia

Overall Rating

4.5

395 Customer Reviews

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Summary

Livia sends safe electrical pulses into your abdomen to block pain sensations from reaching your brain in order to give you pain relief from period cramps. Our review examines whether this device works and who can benefit from it.

Pros

  • The discrete device can be worn without detection
  • 14-hour charge should last all day
  • Begins relieving pain within 30 seconds
  • 90% of users in clinical trials experienced some level of pain relief

Cons

  • Clinical studies involved small sample sizes
  • Doesn’t work for all participants
  • Might not work for plus-sized users

Livia Review: A Detailed Look

By Lydia Noyes

Updated on: Jun 30, 2020

Medically Reviewed by Anthony Dugarte, M.D., C.S.C.S

Livia is a device that allegedly helps alleviate cramps and pain related to menstrual cycles. This subtle device should be worn against your skin, and by pushing a button, you can make it stimulate your nerves to block pain.

The company claims that using Livia is safe for all users and capable of providing immediate relief.

In this analysis, we’ll investigate whether Livia will work as described and whether it’s worth the investment.

How Does Livia Work?

Livia’s underlying technology is based on what’s known as the Gate Control Theory. Dr. Anthony Dugarte, HighYa’s medical researcher, said that this theory was first developed in the 60s by Ronald Melzack and Patrick Wall.

The theory’s premise is that pain sensations associated with injuries are transmitted to the brain from the peripheral nerves through the spinal cord. Along the way, the pain signal encounters “gates” it must go through to continue passing on the message. If these gates are closed, your brain can’t sense the pain.

“The interplay between the central and peripheral nervous systems is complex and not completely understood, says Dr. Dugarte. “Nonetheless, it seems as though a number of factors can affect whether the nerve gates are open or closed.”

Products like Livia work to close these gates by stimulating your nerves so that you don’t feel pain in real-time. This device uses the company’s patented “SmartWave” technology to send out electric micro-pulses to prevent you from feeling menstrual pain.

Once you start using the device, you should experience some level of pain relief within a minute.

Livia utilizes similar mechanisms of action to TENS units (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation), as both provide pain relief through stimulatory impulses.

They will differ in their pulse frequency and the specific waveforms they send out. The company claims that Livia is the only TENS-style product optimized explicitly for period pain.

Clinical Studies

Livia has undergone three clinical trials since its creation in 2016. Below is a summary of the results from these studies:

  • Study 1: 61 women were assessed for menstrual pain over four cycles. 90% experienced pain relief when using a Livia prototype, 31% reported complete relief, and 32% found that it delivered relief faster than drugs.

  • Study 2: 102 women monitored their menstrual pain for four cycles, using an improved prototype. 86% reported pain relief, 57% experienced complete pain relief, and 72.5% stated it worked faster than drugs.

  • Study 3: 65 women monitored period pain for two cycles. Half used a Livia prototype, and half used a sham device that created tingling sensations for the first cycle, and then both groups switched. The study found a statistically significant difference between the prototype and sham device, and participants reported general improvements in their quality of life after using it.

Though these findings seem promising for Livia’s effectiveness, it’s essential to keep them in context.

“While the independent testing does add some merit to their claims, they have yet to be published,” Dr. Dugarte shares. “This means they have not gone through a rigorous peer-review process to determine if their methods were sound.”

Likewise, the sample sizes are small and might not be indicative of the general population’s response to the device. Saying that, it seems that Livia and similar products do show promise for managing period pain for some users.

Side Effects

Livia works externally, which means that it doesn’t have any impact on your menstrual cycle, hormone balance, or other functions.

Likewise, there are no known side effects associated with using the device as described.

The one exception is if you have a heart pacemaker, as the device’s electrical impulses may interfere with it. Don’t use Livia if you have one.

How to Use Livia

Livia comes as a small colored device (about the size of an MP3 player) with two connected electrode pads that come pre-coated with gel.

You are meant to stick onto your skin at the site of the pain, usually your lower stomach or back. Secure the device in your pocket or by clipping It to your pants and turn it on.

It’s designed to be inconspicuous to wear throughout daily life or even while exercising – though keep it from getting wet.

The device can be recharged through a micro USB cable, and a single charge should last up to 14 hours.

A small LED indicator above the power button shows you what level the device is set on and how to adjust it from high to low intensity. There are 16 settings total, and tapping the button four times will increase it by one.

Pricing and Refund Information

One-Time Purchase Subscription
Cost $199 $8/mon. (The first month is free, $29 signup fee)
Warranty 2 years Lifetime
Gel Pods 3-month supply Lifetime supply (request more when needed)
Shipping Free across the US Free worldwide
Bonus Features NA Receive new Livia every three years

You can also purchase a six-month supply of gel pods for $29.

With the subscription plan, you must sign up for a minimum of four months. You can return your Livia and cancel your subscription at any time after.

It’s also possible to purchase Livia “skins” to change the color and texture of your device. Each costs $12.

One-time Livia purchases come with a 120-day money-back guarantee. The device must be in good physical condition, and you are responsible for all taxes and return shipping costs.

Analysis of Customer Reviews

There are more than 90 reviews for Livia on our website, averaging 3.2 stars. Here’s are the most common trends:

Compliments:

  • Easy to take out in public when necessary
  • Reduces period pain as well as painkillers or a heating pad
  • Period relief without side effects

Complaints:

  • Slow refund process or refund not honored
  • Didn’t relieve period pain as promised
  • Might not be big enough for plus-sized users

The Bottom Line

Livia claims to offer women with painful periods a drug-free way to get their lives back with minimal inconvenience. The existing clinical trials are small, but they indicate this electrical stimulus device could be effective for many people.

“I do like that Livia is non-invasive, drug-free, and FDA approved,” says Dr. Dugarte. “Independent clinical testing shared by Livia demonstrated safety and efficacy when this product is used as directed.”

However, it’s important to acknowledge that there are multiple causes of menstrual pain, and a device like Livia merely works to cover up the symptoms rather than addressing the problem.

Dr. Dugarte is concerned that using the device might cause you to delay seeking medical treatment for your pain that could potentially lead to the diagnosis of a serious health issue.

If you deal with chronic, debilitating menstrual pain, it’s best to talk with your doctor about your symptoms to rule out other health problems first.

Customer Reviews

4.5 Stars out of 395 Reviews
5 Star:77% 4 Star:11% 3 Star:1% 2 Star:0% 1 Star:9%
90% Recommend This Product
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Posted on Dec 6, 2021

Endometriosis pain management

By Melisa A., Phoenix, AZ, Verified Reviewer

I live with chronic pain due to Endometriosis. Livia helps to manage this pain, I've even been able to cut back on pain medications. I do wish it had more leads and more modes, but for the price and the discreet, compact design, it's amazing.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Compact

Discreet

Pain management

Only 2 patches

Only a few modes

Posted on Dec 6, 2021

Endometriosis user

By Maria R., Fort Myers, FL, Verified Reviewer

I have a severe case of endometriosis. I got the Livia as a last resort purchase. I must say, it has been worth every penny. I just had my third surgery for the disease, and the only thing that truly kept me alive was the Livia device. The only con I really have is that I shorted out one of the sets of electrodes I had. I wish they were more accessible.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

It worked as advertised

Solid battery life

Small, discreet

Electrodes are easy to wear out

Clip doesn't keep device on panty/pant well

Posted on Dec 5, 2021

Would definitely recommend

By Tina B., Sweden, Verified Reviewer

I"ve had my Livia for a couple of years now and I love it. It has saved me countless of money on painkillers and hours of pain. I don't know what I would have done without it!

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

It's small

It reduces cramps

The travel case is a bit small

Posted on Dec 5, 2021

Livia will change your life

By Dani B., Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada, Verified Reviewer

Livia came into my life a few years ago after clicking on a targeted ad. Livia felt like a gift from the heavens after suffering with debilitating menstrual cramps my entire adult life.

Feeling skeptical when my device arrived, I anxiously waited for my next period. Bam! It was a doozy. I watched the videos and joined the Livia community to understand how this tiny device was to “cure” my pain. Then I strapped in and turned it on. Pulsing electrodes felt weird, especially when I turned it up to high and could see my abdomen spasm. But then after about 20 minutes, the horrible uteri pain lifted.

I’m now a loyal Livia customer, relying on this tiny device every month to provide me with relief. I couldn’t function normally without Livia.

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Pain relief

Ease of use

Product support

The wires fray

Battery doesn’t last very long after 4 years of use

Posted on Dec 5, 2021

Lifesaver!

By Vanessa A., Accra, Ghana, Verified Reviewer

Livia is the best! I have had period pains for the longest time so I doubted it initially, but trust me, it really does work!

Length of Use: 6–12 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Easy to use

Stylish

Actually works

Expensive

Posted on Dec 5, 2021

Livia

By Crystal-Rose G., New South Wales, Australia, Verified Reviewer

I just received this, and I have to say it is by far the best thing I have used! It helps with my pain and lets me do my everyday things!

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

It's comfortable to wear

It's discreet

Takes away the pain

The first initial shock

The stickiness

How long you have to charge it

Posted on Dec 4, 2021

Works wonders!

By Dominique R., Dallas, PA, Verified Reviewer

I love this product. It is truly amazing and comfortable to wear. It really works and I’m so happy I got one. I work a desk job so I don’t get to move around a lot. I feel like that makes period cramps worse. So this product is a lifesaver.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Light weight

Works

Comfortable

Battery dies fast

Small case to store everything in

Posted on Dec 4, 2021

Love my little device!

By Rosie R., Washington, D.C., Verified Reviewer

In love with my Livia device! Has been a huge lifesaver for my lower back pain from an injury and my PCOS. I have many cysts on my ovaries and it gets very painful. Livia takes away all my pain without medicine.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

How compact it is

Different skins to change appearance

Pads

I’d love a longer length cable/cord that goes from the pads to the device

Posted on Dec 3, 2021

Pricey, but...

By May M., Texas, Verified Reviewer

My friend recommended this to me since my pain keeps me stuck to wherever I can plug in my heating pad, plus buying Tylenol. I debated because it's pricey, but I was able to work and actually enjoy my day without any painkillers!

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Discreet

Easy to use

No “cons” were specified in this review

Posted on Nov 30, 2021

No more pain meds needed

By Riannon F., Cleveland, TN, Verified Reviewer

I love how easy Livia is to use. It is small and discreet and stays clipped in place. I can feel it working in less than 30 minutes, and it has allowed me to stop having to constantly take OTC pain medication during my period.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Small

Rechargeable

Works quickly

Case could be bigger so it is easier to fit items

Posted on Nov 30, 2021

Worth the money

By Casandra R., Wisconsin, Verified Reviewer

I'm currently on my first cycle with Livia. I have endometriosis and PCOS so I go through hell every month. I'm a full-time hairstylist and working on clients for 8 hours in unbearable pain is impossible. Today wearing my Livia made it much more possible. Not 100% pain-free but much more tolerable. Hands down a great purchase.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Makes pain more tolerable

Discreet

Could be stronger

Wish the cords were a little longer

Showing 1-11 of 395

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