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So confused about SCS

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:31 AM in Pain Management
I have been gone for a really long time and it's so good to be back here and see some old friends. Any way, I am about to have surgery for the trial of SCS and I'm so confused! My doctor has been telling me that the recovery for the permanent SCS will not be so bad. She just said that I will need to take it easy for a few weeks. No special restrictions. But every thing I am reading on here suggests that it is kind of a hard recovery. I've read that I will not be able to bend, lift, twist or raise my arms over my head. Also no driving for 2 to 4 weeks and I might need help at home for awhile. I told my doctor about that and she says the recovery is not that bad. She has been the best doctor I have ever had and has a wonderful bed side manner. I am just so confused. Is there any one who can help me figure this out because if I have all these restrictions I will need to arrange for help soon. Thanks.


  • For the trial there usually aren't too many restrictions other than the no shower that are hard on people. Now depending on your doc and her experience, that of course drives the restrictions. I have found that my doc has changed his restrictions since I had my SCS implanted a year ago. He has significantly lessened the restrictions from what you are reading about on here. His experience has shown him something that has driven him and the others in his clinic to reduce the restrictions. That clinic does a large number of SCS implants.

    The key is, to ask your doc for the restrictions in writing and to also double check with the implant manufacturers recommended restrictions as well.

    Making arrangements for some help, is always a good idea, otherwise you may do like many of us and over do things because you feel so good.

    Good luck with your trial.

  • A lot of it also depends on the type of lead(s) you have, the location of the lead(s), the type of anchor(s) they use, and the anchor technique they use.

    I had very few restrictions after my permanent implant. When I went for my 10-day post-op check and staple removal, my neurosurgeon left me with no specific restrictions beyond "if it's uncomfortable, don't do it again for a while." When I went back to my pain doctor about 4 days later and asked him if the neurosurgeon was insane, he said those restrictions sounded good to him too and told me to just use common sense, listen to my body (for a change), and respond to what it's telling me.

    If you trust your doctor - and it sounds like you do - then talk to her about the exact restrictions and follow her advice to the letter. And throw in a dash of my doctor's advice too - listen to what your body is telling you and respond accordingly. ;)

  • I know exactly what you mean! I had been reading on this site about the need to be very, very careful and not bend or twist. My only restriction after the permanent implant was to "take it easy for a couple of weeks". Its interesting to read that times have loosened up a lot of the restrictions. Good question! Susan
  • All I can say is that if the restrcitions have been lessened, my doctor and medtronic reps are entirely unaware of it...

    I have been told repeatedlt, no BLT, no lifting over 5lbs and they do not even want to release me for work till 6 weeks out. I have begged and pleaded and have been told it is necessary...

    Every case and doctor is different, for me, I don't like all the restrictions. However, What exactly should I do?

    Ignore them and be that one in 5,000 or whatever the number is? then the lead does move? I Would be so pissed to do this again.

    So, unless when my staples get pulled tomorrow they tell me different I will do as they say.

    I only pray I will be sane at the end of this...

  • I called my doctor today and talked to her nurse and she set a few things straight for me. I will wear the trial SCS for two weeks with 2 appointments inbetween for any adjustments.For the permant SCS they plan on me being in the hospital over night but if no complications I can go home that night. The recovery will be about a month but not nearly as bad as other surgeries. I will most definitely have to take it easy and try not to bend lift or twist. I guess the leads have to have scar tissue form on them and that is what secures them. So all in all it doesn't sound to bad. I just hope it works. I really want to cut down on my meds so that eventually I'll only have to take something for break through. Thank you for all your replys. It helped me a lot!
  • Glad to hear you talked to them, I am still under restrictions. No talking my PM into anything less, not talking my wife into ignoring them...Staples are out! :D
  • I am happy to hear you are getting your permanent implant. So am I about the first week in June.
    I am going to follow my Doctors orders to the letter and then some. I do not want to take any chances on messing things up.(leads slippin)
    I am so looking forward to this treatment for my foot and leg pain!! It reduced my pain 100%!! What more can you ask for? Not even the pain meds do that!!
    I do hope you are as lucky as i have been with the stimulator.
    May the sun always shine on you...
    Patsy W
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