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Question about charging my SCS

honeysmomhhoneysmom Posts: 292
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:42 AM in Spinal Cord Stimulation
I was reading Anjuan's response on another post and thought I might throw my question out to you all. I have a Boston Scientific stimulator that was implanted in mid November 2009. I am fortunate in that I only have to charge it every couple of weeks. The last two times I finally got the nerve to try using the adhesive patch rather than the belt or just sliding it down in my underwear. It is much more effective charging, using the adhesive, but it is so very painful taking it off. Charging in any fashion tends to make the IPG area sensitive for a couple of days anyway, but this is worse. Anyone else experienced this and do you have any bright ideas for removing it when the charge is completed?
The first time I accidently fell asleep and the area was hot and overly sensitive and I was groggy and thought maybe it was because of all of that causing it to be so painful to peel off. But the same thing happened when I charged two nights ago and stayed awake the whole time.
I would sure love any thoughts you might have and I'll be asking my rep when I see him next Thursday for follow up.
Hope you all have a great spring weekend!


  • Sorry to hear that...I have and ANS and it came with a charging belt. This belt holds the charger in place. Do you have an allergy to adhesive? Only thing I can think of is baby oil to remove the adhesive but I am not sure if that will damage your charger in any way. I would talk to the rep about it...there has to be something that will make it easier for you. Let us know
  • Through experimentation I found that the easiest way for me to charge is to use the belt and charge while wearing either shorts or jogging pants made out of 100% polyester. Any type of cotton clothing or underwear only interferes with the signal strength, causes heat build up and causes additional friction with the IPG pocket. So in a nutshell, I put on the shorts (no inner liner or underclothes), strap the belt with charging plate over top of the IPG and actually sit back on it in my recliner for a few hours. It works great for me and I have no issues with heat, loss of signal integrity or pocket irritation.

  • I probably just need to resort to the belt. I've got one, but found it easier to just tuck the charger in the elastic of my underwear. The adhesive patch is definitely the most secure, but I think it is TOO secure since it hurts like the dickens to remove it.
    Thanks to both of you! I'll see what my rep says on Thursday and I shouldn't have to charge before that, but if I do, I'll definitely use the belt instead.
  • One thing that I have learned when it comes to having an SCS, is to always have a full charge when meeting with the rep or doc. There are things unforeseen that can come up and having a full charge gives you more flexibility and piece of mind.

    Just to give you a for instance ... I had an issue where performance had dropped off on one lead. I went in to see the rep and doc at 7:30AM, at 11:30AM I was in surgery to repair the lead wire into the IPG. If I had not had a full charge before my appointment, I would have run too low on battery capacity to make it long enough for the pocket incision to heal enough to allow recharging.

    I just make it a habit to have a full charge before traveling or seeing the doc or rep.

  • I now remember several of you mentioning that before. I'll do it on Wednesday evening, using the belt, for sure!
  • I always charge before appointments. Even though my normal use patterns don't require frequent charging, a programming session can easily suck up half my battery.
  • I've had another issue arise with my hip/pocket. There is no redness, perhaps a small amount of swelling, but it is hurting so badly since last Thursday to the point that I am having to sleep on my right side (IPG is on left hip) and prop my back against a pillow to get comfortable. Riding/driving the car is agonizing and forget sitting in a hard backed chair or church pew!

    At first I blamed the charging session on Wednesday night and trying to remove that adhesive patch, but it has gotten worse. I can't think of anything that has happened out of the ordinary other than a couple of tougher physical therapy sessions, but I have just been working my upper body in PT. Of course you tend to tense up the legs and hips when working with the weights, but surely that hasn't caused a problem. The IPG appears to be sticking out more than normal right where the scar line is and feels rough to the touch, but I have no change in stimulation (thank goodness). I even had my physical therapists look at it and feel it today to make sure it wasn't my imagination.

    Could that thing have shifted a little causing irritation?

    I confirmed today with my rep that he would be available on Thursday when I have my routine appointment with the pain mgt doctor. I hope we can figure this out. I never expected my hip to be the biggest "pain", but right now, it surely is!

    Sorry to ramble so much. I'm afraid I'm becoming dependent on you guys after having a relatively easy time of it the first few months.
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