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Typical Questions and Answers on Spinal Cord Stimulation

13

Comments

  • SCS units are a great tool to try for help in pain control. Not a fix but they help a lot in my case. You will have a trial for up to or about five days. This will let you know if it well be any help for you. I have two units, a medtronics and a Boston Sci. Both work well and are comparable.

    Good Luck
  • Due to several operations, and a lumbar fusion with instrumentation, I have suffered chronic back pain for many years. Tramadol has given me some relieve, but over time the pain has progressively become much more intense. My most recent M RI, indicates that nothing medically can ease the pain. My Neurosurgeon recommended a spinal cord stimulator. I just saw a specialist in the field of spinal cord stimulator who wants to put me on a Medtronic five day trial. I am very new at this, I do need the in put and support of someone in this forum who has had a spinal cord stimulation implanted. I do not know what to expect, and quite apprehensive. I do thank in advance any one who will be so kind as to put some light into a matter that is unknown to me.
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  • Thank you so much for your most helpful information. Just yesterday I was fitted with the Medtronic spinal cord stimulation trial unit. It is quite a new experience, but it is helping with my chronic back pain involving the right leg. I am being told that I am a good candidate for the permanent implantation. The trial unit is coming off the day after tomorrow will then have to make a decision. more in put on your part would be most welcome
    Thanks again.
    AR
  • I have what is now being called FBSS (from a surgery to fuse L4-5, L5-S1 done in 2010) . I live in a very remote area and my primary doctor has been great in that he prescribes 50mg Fentanyl patches which I change every other day. I still am in a lot of pain and have all the symptoms described in FBSS, but I have (barely) been able to continue my employment with a 36-hour work week. However, I'm not sure how much longer I can continue to work and just discovered today the SCS. I am in Northern California and don't know who I should even consult with to discuss this option. Does anyone have any suggestions for a medical doctor that I can go to?
  • I am a 43 yo female & had torn L4-5 disk about 12 yrs ago. My doc did an IDET procedure (he actually developed it but they are out dated & no longer done.) and it worked wonderfully. I had no problems for 11 years. About a year ago, by lower back pain came back with a vengance. Back to pain management doc, another fun discogram revealed torn L 4-5 and L5-S1 discs with pain caused by fluid leaking on nerves. Pain radiated into my hips & behind, then the sciatica set in. We tried epidural injections, but they increased the pain exponentially. Pain pills kept increasing, added narcotic patch and slowly lost ability to participate in most activities due to pain. In April, I had the stimulator trial & the leads rolled into the gutter causing horrible abdominal stimulation better referred to as 'zapping' every time I changed positions, laughed, coughed, etc. In an effort to salvage the trial, I went back in & had the leads pulled down (and back toward the center) for better placement & stimulation. We were at least able to get stimulation in my hips & behind, and decided to go ahead with the permanent implant (surgery was done by neurosurgeon). Today is 4 weeks post surgery. I am small framed (117 lbs) and he had some difficulty getting the paddle lead placed. The laminectomy and incision were more than expected & I had to stay overnight with a drain in the incision. At the 1 week mark I still had pain but was able to go into the office for part of the day then work from home. At 2 weeks, my staples were removed & I had bizarre swelling. It looked like there was a golf ball under the bottom half of my incision. They suspected a pocket of fluid so they attempted ultrasound & aspiration with no luck. Needless to say, i backed off my working hours. 2 days later, the entire spinal incision was puffed out like a little pillow, so he ordered a ct scan & lab work to rule out fluid leak or infection. Everything came back ok, only showing a bit of cellulitis, so he put me on an antibiotic just to cover our bases. 5 days later the headache & nausea set in. I just felt icky! That was 1 week ago today. I went in to see him on Friday. My incisions look really well & show no visible signs of infection, just still a bit puffy depending on the time of day. The headache & nausea & horrible feeling is really bad by that point, so he suspected a possible spinal fluid leak & put me on bedrest for the weekend. Monday morning brought no change. Today, I had a CT Myelogram that was absolutely fine. I'm glad I don't have a leak, but why do I feel like crap? He is now ordering a lumbar puncture to check for menengitis and a head CT. This has me more than a little on edge. Has anyone else had the headache & nausea like this? What else could it possibly be? He's talking about sending me back to the pain management doc to see if he can figure it out. Any words of wisdom out there???
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  • I urge all of you to look into a new SCS technology called Stimwave. Same technology as Medtronic, BS, and SJ but completely MRI safe, no invasive surgery, ie no battery implanted under the skin. The battery and generator is worn on a small cloth belt instead of implanted under the skin. It has been FDA approved in the U.S. and numerous procedures have already been performed in Florida, Texas, and Chicago. Stimwave is going to revitionize the SCS industry by giving patients with chronic pain a non invasive approach to SCS that is just as effective without a rigorous surgery.
  • paula wilsonppaula wilson Posts: 1
    edited 01/27/2016 - 7:58 PM
    ihave multilevel degenerative disc disease ,a left sided disc herniation at t12-l1 level, ii have osteoporosis in hip andback , i lose feeling in mymy legs all the time, i'm in pain all the time ,i can't sleep for the pain ,i now have to take blood pressure pills ,the pain keeps my blood pressure high ,what can i do ,help

    ************************************************
    there are no medical professionals on the forum side of this site. therefore everything you read is based on the personal experiences and/or research done by the individual member. comments should never be taken as pure medical facts. you need to discuss this with your doctor. they are the only ones that can provide you with detailed information about you, the patient.

    welcome to spine-health
    please click on link for helpful information!
    liz, spine-health moderator
  • Dadio60DDadio60 Posts: 1
    edited 01/28/2016 - 5:19 AM
    I had a Medtronic spinal cord implant surgery in February of 2015. It has worked well for me. It doesn't eliminate all the pain but makes it manageable. I charge it while going about my daily routine with the belt recharger. It is programmable for just about every position which is a huge plus. It was a long process for me because of insurance issues but was well worth it!
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    welcome to spine-health
    please click on link for helpful information!
    Sue
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History



  • Here is my experience with an SCS trial, never made it to the implant stage and I never will after this!!!

    I went for the outpatient trial of the Medtronic device and suffered complete paralysis within 1 hour (trying to get
    relief from a pinched nerve). The wire lead at the T8 area somehow created a
    blood leak (epidural hematoma) that traveled from the T5 and pooled around the
    L3. After all the emergency issues that follow such a problem, I now have some
    feeling after 3 weeks and learning how to walk and do other things completely
    foreign to my body. What will return or the outcome for me is unknown.
    The DR I chose had a 25 year record I reviewed and never had a problem reported.

    If you have heard of this problem with the leads
    in a simulator trial please inform with a contact is possible. My wife and I have searched and cannot find a like
    problem. Would like to know of others is possible.



    Best of luck. I tried it all but acupuncture for a pinched nerve. With what I know now with implants I would never alow anything placed in my body.



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