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Activity During Trial

AnneENorthAAnneENorth Posts: 15
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:44 AM in Spinal Cord Stimulation
I would like opinions on how much activity should be attempted and what kind during the trial. I am scheduled for my trial this Tuesday and currently spend the majority of my day flat on my back and have for the past 5 years. I want to be able to tell if the stimulator would work for my pain but in case it doesn't work, I also don't want to be in pain for the next year recovering from the extra activities during the trial.



  • I wouldn't go out and run a marathon but I also wouldn't lay flat on my back either. Just try to do what's comfortable and reasonable for you.

  • I did simple things like taking some walks and doing a little shopping. You will know very quickly if it is going to improve your current quality of life. I couldn't walk more than a few steps without tremendous pain. With the trial stimulator I could walk several blocks without much more than a twinge or two.

    Like Dave said, don't go running any marathons, but don't just hang out on the bed or couch. Try simple things like brushing your hair or getting a drink or making a sandwich.

    Hope this helps.

  • Anne,

    I have my trial at the end of the month so I haven't been through it yet, but what my doctor told me is that most people who are helped by the trial note improvements in the simple activities of daily living. He said it doesn't require a huge increase in activity to "test" things out.

    For me, I have made a short list of measurable goals I have with the SCS and I will use that list to help me determine how much the trial helps and whether or not it is worth it to move forward with the permanent implant. For example, I get really bad leg cramps after walking for more than 5 minutes, so I plan on going for a walk with the trial stimulator to see if I can improve on my current 5 minutes. I also have poor sitting tolerance and I'm hoping the stimulator will increase the time I can sit, so I'm planning on doing some sitting during my trial. These are small goals (walking, sitting) that aren't going to be a huge increase in activity, but will definitely give me a chance to gauge just how much the trial helps.

    I would think if you can come up with a list of simple daily activities that don't require the BLTs where you are hoping to get improvement then you can use that as a guide to help you "test" the stimulator with activities without overdoing it. I think having these small goals and knowing what you are hoping to achieve with the stimulator *before* starting the trial might also help in making the decision as to whether the trial helps enough to go forward with the real deal.

    But, as I said I have not had my trial yet, so others who have been there may have better advice. This is just the approach I'm taking and it pretty much fits my personality, so having such a structured approach may or may not suit you. Best of luck with the trial. Please post and let us know how it goes!
  • During my trial over a year ago, i did everything i used to do except lifting, bending and twisting. I did it in moderation of course.
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