Spinal Cord Stimulator
Have you ever hit your knee on a table? Without even thinking about it, you probably start to rub the area as soon as you can because you know it will make it feel better. Mechanical stimulation (rubbing) overpowers the pain signal, providing pain relief. This was the basis for the gate theory first published by Melzack and Wall in 1965. This sentinel work helped create the framework for our understanding of pain signals and pathways. Further research over the last 50 years has led to the development and design of our modern spinal cord stimulators. These spinal cord stimulation devices are safe, effective, and allow patients to be pain- and medication-free. With a variety of device choices, our specialists at the Spine Institute of North America know the intricate details in order to help select the best option for you.
What conditions do spinal cord stimulators treat?
- Severe nerve pain
- Failed spine surgery
- Chronic pain syndrome or complex regional pain syndrome
Who is a candidate for spinal cord stimulators?
Once a patient is selected for spinal cord stimulation, he or she undergoes two steps. First, the orthopedic surgeon will insert a temporary percutaneous (through the skin) electrode lead for a trial treatment period. The electrode is connected to a stimulator that the patient can control. Second, if the trial offers successful pain management by eliminating the patient’s pain, the physician will implant the permanent stimulator under the skin. This back pain treatment can be done with local anesthetic so that the patient is alert and comfortable. After the procedure, the physician will determine the best pulse strength for the patient.
What are the advantages of the Spinal Cord Stimulation?
- Same-day procedure
- Local anesthesia
- Short recovery time; typically, patients can go back to work within a few days
- Very good outcomes
- Reduction or total pain relief
- Least-invasive procedure
What Is the Success Rate for Spinal Cord Stimulation in NJ?
Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is an effective way to reduce the intensity of back pain and make it easy to manage. The efficacy of this technique varies from one patient to another.
The majority of those who have used this treatment report a 50 to 70 percent reduction in pain. Most patients also state that they experience an increase in ability to enjoy normal daily activities and improved mobility at work.
What Are the Long-Term Results of Spinal Cord Stimulation?
A study presented at the American Academy of Pain Medicine showed that out of 443 patients surveyed, 75 percent of those who waited for no more than two years reported high success rates.
This information shows that for long-term success, it’s important to start using the spinal cord stimulator shortly after you begin experiencing acute or chronic pain. SCS is particularly effective for providing long-term relief from complex regional pain syndrome and other overwhelming conditions.
Does Spinal Cord Stimulation Have Side Effects?
The neurostimulation implant is fixed under the skin with a surgical procedure. Surgical complications may occur, including pain, infection and bleeding. After the device has been planted, device complications can occur, including unintended movement, breaking, failed connections and jolting.
Such events could cause discomfort and loss of therapy. To correct these problems, you may need reprogramming of the device or corrective surgery. While device-related complications can occur, their frequency is diminishing due to advances in technology. Also, using the device for a trial period allows you to test it and find out if it will offer you the desired benefits.
ARE YOU A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR A SPINAL CORD STIMULATOR PROCEDURE?
- To see if you are a good candidate for a spinal cord stimulator procedure, take our pain evaluation questionnaire and someone from our office will follow up with you as soon as possible.
If you already know what you are suffering from and want to make an appointment now, click here: