Commanding Relief: Spinal Cord Stimulators help you take control over your chronic pain without invasive surgery or opioid treatment.
Spinal Cord Stimulation, a therapy that masks pain signals before they reach the brain, is generally recommended when other pain management methods have failed. Often used in accordance with pain management treatments like exercise and relaxation methods, the Spinal Cord Stimulator (SCS) eliminates the need for invasive surgery and opioid medication, literally putting the control over your pain– and your life- in the palm of your hand.
Implanted in the epidural space around the spinal cord, the SCS stimulates the nerves of muscles by sending signals to the spine, thus blocking pain impulses, that you control with a small, hand-held device. An SCS helps to lessen chronic pain that is caused by: Complex Regional Pain Syndrome; Arachnoiditis; Sciatica; Angina; severe Diabetic Neuropathy; Peripheral Vascular Disease and Multiple Sclerosis, in addition to abdominal and perineal pain, stump pain and spinal cord injury.
Spinal Cord Stimulator vs. Spinal Cord Surgery
To reiterate, SCS procedures are most often used when other pain management options have had no positive results, yet the patient does not want to undergo Spinal Cord Surgery. That being said, SCS procedures are preferred because of the benefits that invasive surgery simply cannot offer. These advantages include:
- Reversibility. The SCS requires only a small incision and can be easily removed.
- A reduction or elimination of opioid treatments
- The ability to control or adjust the intensity and location of the stimulation
- Precise targeting of pain
- No recovery period
Is SCS Right for You?
While SCS has a high success rate, not everyone is a good candidate. Some things that you should discuss with your doctor include:
- Any history of untreated drug addiction or mental health issues.
- Any medical conditions that would contradict implementation
- If you have had previous surgery for your chronic pain
- If you have had a successful SCS trial
Your trial stimulation will determine if an SCS will work for you, depending on the location, intensity and location of your pain. Generally performed as an outpatient procedure, you will be sent home with instructions on how to use the trial stimulator. It is suggested that you write down what stimulation settings and pain relief levels that you experience while you are performing different activities. After about a week, you will return to your doctor’s office to review your results and discuss whether or not an SCS is your best treatment.Leave a reply
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