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Questions about Spinal Cord Stimulation

Hi everyone,
My name is Terri. I'm 25 and I'll be going for the trial for the SCS in about two weeks. I'll give you a brief rundown of my medical history, In 2011, I had to lift a German Shepherd that had collapsed at work (I am a Vet Tech). She was somewhere on 60-70lbs and I had to pick her up off the ground, in and out of low cages, on and off exam tables, etc. That night my back begin to give me issues. Fastfoward to today and I have finally been diagnosed with a bugling L5-S1 with nerve damage in both legs, Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction, and Lumbar Facet Syndrome. I have tried epidural steroid injections, lumbar RFA, pain meds, etc. Nothing has worked for me. My pain doctor told me that I am a good candidate for the Spinal Cord Stimulator. I finally got approval for the Stimulator and I am scheduled to have the trial done soon.
I just had a few questions that I hope someone can answer. Did the SCS help you? What does the stimulation feel like? How painful is pain post-trial and post-procedure for the permanent implant? How long have you had it and does it still help your pain? How greatly was your pain reduced? How have you and what have you been able to do since the SCS that you weren't able to do before? Do you get used to the feeling of the stimulation after a while?
Sorry if I asked too many questions. I'd just really like to hear from people who have had the procedure done so that I can have an honest idea of what to expect. Thank you in advance!


  • darby01darby01 Posts: 191
    edited 09/10/2015 - 2:35 PM
    I just got my permanent last week(Sept 1st) so right now I'm still laying in bed recurring from the surgical pain. This pain is pretty intense! It originates between your shoulder blades and it hurts to pretty much do anything and you wont be able to raise your arms up or forward for a day or two and I was told the pain between the shoulder blades can last a few days up to 6 weeks. The pain from the trial hurt, but not as bad, and ends after a day or two. Now for the pros: My pain was reduced about 50%. I was able to enjoy a 4th of July party, go grocery shopping, and sleep without being in a ridiculous amount of pain. The stimulation sensation varies on how high you set it. It can be a tingling sensation (I think it feels great) up to where your muscles will spasm. After a failed lumbar fusion(L4/L5),pain meds, therapy, and all sorts of injections, the scs is absolutely fabulous! I hope it works for you and keep us posted
  • Ive had my permanent one for about 4 months now, so its new to me. Everyone will have different results, I am 30. It helped me greatly.. I couldn't believe the difference. The trial I was not feeling well, in a lot of pain the day I got home, and that night. The next morning I was pretty sore but I seemed ok. My Dr gave me the OK to do every day things, as long as no bending lifting twisting. I was able to walk around the mall, out to dinner, etc. I had that in a week. I remember having discomfort, more so at night. The permanent one, I was in a lot more pain, coming out of the surgery I was crying and I had to ask for pain meds. I didn't stay in the hospital, I went home. That night and for 2 days I was in a lot of pain and didn't move around too much. I was able to go back to work after about a week. I have a job where I am able to sit and do not have to lift or anything so I was ok going back. It helps my pain a lot. I get about 75% relief. I had half my lung removed and have nerve damage and pain and get muscle cramps in my chest that they could never get under control, the cramps I would get a few times a week. In 4 months I think I have had 2. I can now do more at the gym, I do still take it easy I do not want to overdue it, I sleep better, when I am on vacation I can walk longer distances. When I am on my feet for long periods of time I am not in a ton of pain. I used to hurt so bad I couldn't bend down to tie my shoes, now I do not have that problem. I do not really know how to explain the stimulation.. lol. Tingling, I guess. I get used to it, I do not always notice it, since I am used to it. I went with Medtronic since it is MRI safe and I am younger and who knows if I will need an MRI. Sorry for writing a book. Good luck!

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