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SCS or pain pump?

RosenscheinRRosenschein Posts: 1
edited 07/20/2014 - 5:12 AM in Pain Management
I have had minimal invasive spinal surgery twice which both times gave no relief to my back and leg pain. I then had a fusion at L5/S1 in October last year. It is now 9 months since my fusion and the fusion is looking great in X-ray but my back and leg pain is getting worse. My neurosurgeon is talking about implanting a spinal cord stimulator. I am wary of this and was wondering if a pain pump would be better. I am on a lot of medication at the moment and the side effects are really getting to me. I am on Lyrica, Amitryptiline, tramahexal, and an anti imflamitory
I am still struggling with quite significant pain, I can only work for a couple of hours a day and have to spend the rest of the time lying down. I have just turned forty and to think that the next forty years of my life may continue like this is a terrible thought. Will the pain pump give me my life back?


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • It may too soon to consider either option really. Your body has been through a lot in the last couple of years, and fusion surgery can take at least a year and two years to find out if the nerve pain is going to resolve . 9 months post op sounds like a lot but it's really not when it comes to knowing what your surgery outcome will be. Nerves only recover at a rate of 1-2 mm per month, so depending on how much nerve damage you had, it is typical for it to worsen before it gets better......if the Lyrica isn't helping, trying a different nerve pain medication might be more helpful, such as gabapentin, or cymbalta or another one altogether. What dose of Lyrica are you taking? Commonly the dosage range for nerve pain is somewhere between 300 mb- 600 mg per day.....Spinal cord stimulators are only useful for nerve pain, but as I said, it may still settle down on it's own. A pain pump is used to deliver opiates intrathecally....
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