Spine-related back pain is a problem for many people. It causes an interruption in performing even the simplest everyday tasks. These people suffer from chronic pain and struggle to find ways to successfully alleviate it. In these cases, spinal cord stimulation for chronic pain may be the answer.
As one of the two forms of neurostimulation therapy, SCS was approved in the late 1980s by the FDA. The success rate averages about fifty to seventy percent. Not all patients, however, will have successful relief from SCS therapy. Patients who have had success with SCS therapy have been able to enjoy increased mobility and a better quality of life.
The term neurostimulation is often used when referring to SCS therapy, but it is actually the term used for a category that contains Peripheral Nerve Field Stimulation and SCS. These two methods involve the use of electrical currents to counteract the pain response by the brain, but they differ on how the electrical node tips on the end through the skin close to the spine. The other end of the wires are attached to a tiny generator that is inserted under the skin of the buttock or abdomen region through a small incision. Electrical currents are sent from the generator through the wires to the spinal cord and its nerves.
The generator can be programmed with a remote control. It is used to adjust the intensity of the current or the specific location and group of wiring. This is also how the current is turned off and on. Generally, it is designed to be customized to suit each patient’s need and provide the most ideal amount of relief.
SCS has been successful in alleviating several conditions. If you have already had surgery or multiple surgeries but are still suffering, this neurostimulation may help. Ideal candidates also include patients who have unrelenting pain in the neck or back that may or may not be accompanied by leg or arm pain. Patients with peripheral vascular disease or peripheral neuropathy are also candidates for SCS.
This stimulation should not be used by women who are nursing or pregnant. It should also be avoided by patients with any form of internal cardiac pieces, such as a pacemaker. SCS is not recommended for people who have had a negative response to transcutaneous electrostimulation therapy or the trial stimulation period.
When the doctor has suggested SCS, a temporary system is used to determine of the therapy will be successful. The wires are placed just under the skin and the temporary generator remains outside the body. It is already programmed with several settings that are used to determine which ones are the most effective. The whole trial stimulation period lasts about a week.
Neil P. Hines is passionate about providing intelligent, unbiased and highly relevant medical information for people dealing with a wide range of pain conditions and related orthopedic needs, including back pain, knee pain, joint replacements, sports medicine, lumbar fusion and more. If you are interested in learning more about spinal cord stimulation doctors Bucks County he recommends that you visit his friends at St. Mary Medical Center.
Author: Neil P. HinesThis author has published 6 articles so far. More info about the author is coming soon.