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10 months out - SCS Update!

cherish22ccherish22 Posts: 706
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Pain Management
Oh my goodness, I am just so excited. I had my permanent SCS (Spinal Cord Stimulator) implanted in January, 2009. I have the ANS/St. Jude Eon Mini and LOVE IT. I've had 3 back surgeries at L5-S1, and was left with severe permanent S1 nerve damage, that burned/seared 24 hours a day. Prior to the SCS, I was reclined 23 hours a day to control the burning. Any movement sent a pain flare that was excruciating. I knew that the minute I could get even a smidgen of pain relief, my hyper crazy self would get right back up and life her life. And I did!!! (I'm a young 42 year old with 20 and 17 year old boys, married 22 years!)

Pain control has been getting better and better - check it out:

Last weekend, we drove 8 hours out of town, had an hour break, then met college buddies for 3 hours in a restaurant with hard wood chairs. Now, we do something very unconventional and frankly unsafe, lol, but we put a real recliner in the back of our van. (We have the van where the seats fold entirely down in the floor). I was FINE.

Next day, had 3 hours of tailgating, a 1/2 mile walk to the stadium, I actually stayed for the game, walked the stairs to my seat, never had to take a break. Did FINE. Had an hour break, then went out to dinner for 2 hours with more friends.

Woke up and drove 8 hours home. All weekend - no breakthrough meds, just my regular long-acting and regular amount muscle relaxers. But NO BT meds!! I actually haven't had a BT med at all in 3 weeks.

But to do all that activity? Like a total normal person? Everyone was fascinated by the SCS - wanted to know all about it, because when they saw me at a wedding a year and a half ago (had to skip last years football get together due to being reclined 23 hours a day), at the wedding I way over did it and left bawling my head off. At the time, I told everyone I should be getting an SCS soon. And I did!! They were all waiting to see/hear how it went.

They did NOT expect to see the "old" Cheri, pre-pain Cheri. I felt so normal and so happy!!

I figured when I got back home, I'd be hit with some recovery, but NOPE. I'm just fine, still no BT meds.

Just wanted to share - just keep the hope. Get your SCS, lay low for 6 to 8 weeks and believe!! I still don't bend, lift or twist, but I am back to doing much of the housework using grippers and I can do almost anything I want. When I'm at home, I do rest in the recliner. I am smart about how much I do, and I make sure not to overdo it. We CAN get some of our lives back!!!

Take care,



  • Is that a spinal cord stimulator? Does it just interrupt the nerve impulse? I have had bad nerve pain for 18 years, I'm getting a 3 disc fusion in Nov. But if that doesn't work for the long run it's always nice to know what else is out there. Thanks for sharing such a positive experience.
  • I'm sorry, I will edit my post. SCS is Spinal Cord Stimulator. Kind of like a pacemaker for your spine/nerves. I am buzzing/massaging/tingling 24 hours a day!

    Good luck with your surgery!

    Take care,


    Well shoot, it won't let me edit. I guess the edit feature only lasts for a little while. Sorry!
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  • Whoo-hoo!!!!! I'm happy for you!
  • Thank you!! I forgot to mention above that I have been taking only 1 to 2 BT meds a week for many months and now none for the last 3 weeks.

    When I get to hurting (the pain is not gone, by any means, just well-controlled with the buzzing) - I can turn my settings up and in about an hour, the pain is back down. Funny it takes an hour, but I'll take it!

  • Way to go girl!!
    To me that wonderful smile on your lovely face says it all!!
    Patsy W :H
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  • That is just awesome!! It is wonderful that you are back out living your life again!
  • That is good news, Glad to hear you are doing so well!
  • Thanks everyone!! I pray every night that pain relief comes to all of us.

    Take care,

  • Ain't life grand! I am so very, very happy that things are going so well for you. I'm sure your husband and sons are just as ecstatic. Susan.
  • Wow, I don't know how I didn't see this post until now.

    Anyhoo, I still remember your posts pre-SCS and how much pain you were in - not just physically, but psychologically and emotionally because of how it effected your family as well as yourself. If anyone wants to know exactly how bad off Cheri was, search her screen name in the search function at the top of the page and read some of her old posts from last year. You will never read about someone in so much pain that you can actually feel it like you will with Cheri.

    Because I've been able to be a fly on the wall of your life, I understand just how wonderful you must feel to get your life back. This is truly one of the most heartwarming and deeply moving success stories we have on Spine-Health.

    Cheri, my friend, you're an inspiration to so many others on SH that have lost hope and now see a slit of shining light at the end of the pain tunnel.

    Congratulations, Cheri. You've worked so hard to deal with your pain and you've finally found your life again. I'm so, so happy for you and your family.

    I know you're busy now galavanting about town and country, but please try to pop in again every now and then. :-)

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