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More questions

I have a few more questions about my trial stimulator that I'm getting on feb 18 they are telling me that I should not be sitting around like do now but I know they just want me to see if it works or not but I'm not sure how much I should push it! I don't know how much I should or shouldn't do because I want this to work so bad. They are telling me that I can't lift my arms above my head but to be pretty active if I can I just don't know really what to do. My issue is my l4l5 left lower back and rear and groin all the way down to the foot with extreme stabbing pain and numbness that has been going on since April 2010. A micro surgery didn't work so now I'm left with nerve damage and this is my last resort. I'm just wondering if anyone has any input that might help me with my trial so it can wort to my benefit! I would appreciate it. Thanks.


  • Backpain
    Yes do not just sit around this would not give a true picture of the help it may give you.
    Be some what active but be smart, no lifting, no straining and watch the bending and twisting.
    From my experience I walked around outside level sidewalks with no strain. I would walk like a small block and then change the program and walk another block. I had four programs that I could switch to. I made notes for the doc and SCS rep as to how much help this gave me and what was differant with each program. They may give you one program or several to play with. They will show you the changes and adjustments you can make within each program. The key to this is play with it to see what it can do for you. I was almost bed bound before my test. During the test I was able to cook and do my dishes which I. Could not before. Remember we all are different and this may or may not help depending on so many things. I did not worry about reducing meds I focused on what I could do with the SCS that I could not with out it.

    Be smart with your choices on my last day I felt really good and I mowed my yard for the first time in a year. This turned out not to have been a wise choice. I got hot and the tape holding the unit to my back became wet and released. The test unit slipped down several inches and that pulled the leads causing the stimulation to change causing what felt like a heart attack. Lucky for me it was the last day of a five day trial so it did not hurt my trail. I did catch hell from the doc because of the swet and dust. He reminded me there was two leads going from the unit into my epidural space and it is very easy to get a dangerous infection from my lil yard work.

    Think of things you would like to try without any stress on the spine but that shows if you are getting help from it. The first great part of my trial was I slept all night with the SCS on. Without it I never slept more then 1to 2 hours at a time.

    have fun with it but test it

  • RickilalasRRickilalas Posts: 559
    edited 02/13/2013 - 6:49 PM
    One last thought they did not warn me about. The test leads are just floating in the epidural space and are very positional at that point and small motion changes can change the power of the stimulation. I had mine turned up for the car ride home and each pot hole was a different experience with most not good. I would suggest turning it down when in a car. After the full implant as the leads or paddle scars in the coverage is much better.

    Any questions ask away
  • lfish43llfish43 Posts: 15
    edited 03/10/2013 - 7:45 PM
    I am currently recovering from SCS surgery I had on March 5th. I had the laminotomy at t9 with paddle leads this time. (this is my third SCS) The advice about your arms over your head is good advice. Get as much help as you can dressing/showering/reaching, etc. As Rick mentioned the trial leads can migrate when changing positions, and can increase or change the level of stimulation. For instance - I was driving with the stimulator on. I went to make a left turn, and as I turned the wheel with my palm on the steering wheel, I had the most horrible pain in my upper back on the left side. It felt like a knife going into my lung from the back. At the same time the stimulation level spiked, and my breath was taken away. I had to pull over for a few - thank goodness there was no traffic around. I guess that's why its not recommended to drive with it on. If you are wondering why this is my third one - I invite you to take a look at a video journal I am keeping of my surgery and recovery. I also explain what happened with the other two. Here is the link to the playlist: (videos are about 10 min ea)

    I hope all works out well for you - feel free to contact me if you would like
    Larry F
  • hello I just wanted to also let you know to enjoy the trial too!!
    the over the head with your arms is temporary after the perm one is in. Of course trial or permanent the SCS has to be babied a little. That is so it will "settle"

    I was so worried about the trial but by the time the trial was over I didn't want to give it back.

    take care
  • Had my trial and it went good and I didn't want to give it up. I'm workers comp and everything is approved for the permanent I'm just waiting on the neuro to find time and give me a date.
  • backpainsucks said:
    Had my trial and it went good and I didn't want to give it up. I'm workers comp and everything is approved for the permanent I'm just waiting on the neuro to find time and give me a date.
    Glad to hear trial went well. Did your doctor tell you which unit he is putting in? (St Jude, Boston scientific, etc) I have Boston Scientific - don't' know , much about the others. I can tell you that I have an awesome rep - which is very important. I will be uploading my next video journal as soon as its done rendering. This video is about the actual incisions - I have two due to the paddle leads that were put in last week.
    Here is the link to my playlist:

    Larry F
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