Hello, my "friends" in pain, I was praying, hoping, wondering: has anyone here had the spinal cord stimulator surgery? Was it successful? Did you receive a tremendous amount of pain relief? Were you actually able to get OFF of these disgusting pain meds, nerve mds (Lyrica! -- nightmare!), etc, etc, I know it's all probably very individual due to diagnosis, location of the pain, reasons for pain, etc.
I would just be SO GREATFUL TO GOD ABOVE AND TO ALL OF YOU for any of your input/stories you can share, etc. I'm going to discuss this procedure w/my PM Doc on Thursday and I'm trying to be as armed with as much information as possible to make an informed decision.
Bless any and all of you who can take some time to write me and also to those of you who can't.
I am sorry to hear your friends pain. I have not heard of this precedure before, but I will be praying for you and your friend. I am going in on Friday for a epidoral injection for my 5 bulging disc in my lumbar. Any medical precedures are scary, I am a bit on edge waiting for Friday to come.
My PM&R doctor told me about Medtronics. They have a morphine pump and an electronic device that is inserted into your body cavity. Wires run from it up between my shoulder blades. This is supposed to relieve the pain. I have a remote control to increase the pain relief.
I got a DVD on both of these units and they are making me an appointment for the electronic unit.
I am with you, I have already asked if anyone has had one of these units put in, but not much response.
Several people on the Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy board of these same Healthboards have recently had spinal cord stimulator trials. You might check there. I tried typing Stim in the search window for the RSD board and got all of the recent threads. Hope this helps.
Hi Barb, I had the SCS implant done last year, I'm sorry to say it didn't work out for me and I had to have it removed within a few short months.
The trial I had with it went okay and I got enough relief from the pain to go ahead with the implant.
All I had from the start was problems and a very difficult time.
You said about getting off your meds, you should have been told or will that this implant will not control all your pain and that you m ay be able to cut back on the meds, but rarely does one get off the meds.
I have to say I have spoken with a lot of people that have had this and I just don't get good reviews from any, there was one before I had the implant and now he is having problems with his.
I have to also say that now that it is out my problems are far from over from the surgery as now I have much pain from the scar tissue.
If you should have this done make sure you go with a dr that you know and trust and that has a lot of experience with implanting these and that he deals with a manufacture that is reputable and in both cases as with the dr and the manufactor I would ask for a list of patients that they have done that you can talk to..
This is also a very expensive surgery and basicaly is only good for treating nerve pain, if it works.
I wish you the best of luck which ever way you go.
Hi! I discussed the stimulator with my PM doc when we were discussing having my morphine pump implanted. If I remember right I wasn't a candidate for the stimulator because of my leg pain - the stimulator will only help with back pain It's been several years so my memory is a little cloudy.
The stimulator is basically an implanted TENS unit. It gives your brain a different sensation to deal with other than your pain.
Hope you can find the info you are looking for so you can make an informed decision. Good luck! I hope whatever you end up doing works out well
hi. I see this meesage was awhile ago, hope this still is of some help. I just wanted to chime in about the neuro stim. I used to be on the boards pretty regularly in the Spring and last year. My log-in is different as i have a new email.
I had a Medtronics NeuroStim implanted in Dec 05. I love it, it has given me back my life.
I went from feeling bone-on-bone grinding pain (had a fusion at l3, l4, l5 & osteoporosis - that dr REALLY messed up my fusion) and taking 75 Duragesic + Morphine for b/t and unable to work or function to now where I can go dancing, I swim, I work 8 hr days, and take an occasional vicodin if I push myself too hard. This thing is a miracle. I take no l/a pain meds. I am happy to answer any questions. Recharging consists of every 10 days or so sleeping of a round hard plastic antenna that "powers up" my back.... no cords I keep it on at a pretty high setting 24/7, and am very happy (probably 65% pain reduction). I was told to expect to need a battery replacement in 5 years (minor day surgery) and that the entire thing should buy me up to 15 years, which is my goal...until technology is improved for a better way to redo my fusion... (I'm 35 and will eventially need a complete re-do, but as i also have osteoporosis, it will be bad). Find a good doctor - I made sure mine had done many. My pain specialist did the trial, then he helped me find the surgeon, we found one who'd done over 200!
Now the "ugly" parts...
One, it is MAJOR surgery, and two, it was MAJOR $$ (In the neighborhood of $100,000)!! My insurance (BCBS) did pay for 90% of it. It isn't like its something small. I have a thick scar from my butt to my neck (the wire leads have to be implanted by essentially laminectomies all the way down your spine). I also have a hockey puck size battery pack in my butt-check (which is how i re-charge it about once every 10 days). You can feel it if you know where to feel, but can't see it. The first few days were hard, but then they turned it on, (they had to leave it off until I healed a bit), and WOW! Once it goes on, it is all worth while. Very hard to explain.
I am the poster girl (knock on wood) for success story for Neuro-Stim. Happy to answer any question from this point of view. I'd do it over again in a heart beat.
I've been taking lyrica for over 5 mo. with 750/500 loratab. i'm looking for help also but the spinal thing sounds drastic? no the med's don't work anymore and something has to give. so i can understand his dission
there is med out ther that will help his pain and easer on his system
but everyone seam's to be hush hush about this because of addicts
looking for a pain spec. still working but this is coming to an end.
can't take the pain anymore. he must endure to the end. u must suffer
many thing for his name's sake. remember these think's luke was a doctor
or at least trying. the Great pifician is the lord. prayer is strong. i will pray for u tonight sorry about miss speal hurting and going down best of luck Brad;.
Mishl.kari. . .I just happened to search on stimulator again and saw your response to my old post!! Thank you SOOOOOOO much. . . My insurance just approved this for me and my trial is scheduled for 8/21. . I'm so happy to see your positive response. I am going in to this with 110% optimism.. like you, I am young and REFUSE to be on this slew of meds that I've been on. . REFUSE!!! I have such high hopes for this and refuse to read responses from people that it (so sad for them) didn't help. .I just can't put those thoughts into my head. I've made the decision to go for it and I have to think positive. Also, like you, my "old life" is over. . I can't walk, I can't sit up for more than 20 minutes at a time, I lost my job, I can't drive. . the list of "can't's goes on and on) I want some semblance of life back and I have to believe this is it. . I so appreciate your post. . more than words could ever describe. . if you can post any more info, that would be great. . from everything I've read and heard, the sensation is pretty hard to describe, right? Is it something you actually "feel" all day, every day? It's not uncomfortable (I hope), is it? I can't wait and pray that also, like you, I can get rid of most of these meds.
I'm so glad that you have your life back! So happy for you. Hoping and praying the same for me.
I asked the same question a few days ago. The responses were of a negative tone, because of the chance of infection. I believe this is similar to what Jerry Lewis took to get relief from his pain. I believe I will get the trial where they don't put the unit implanted yet. Only the wires, then you can vary the intensity-find if any level does work for you. I am so tired of this intense constant pain, the spasms that they tell me are a protective mechanism that the body uses. I have a hard time not trying just about anything to find relief. Not to mention all the narcotics and other drugs that you know in time will not be good for you.
Last edited by cornburner; 08-05-2006 at 05:45 PM.