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-   -   spinal cord stimulator (https://www.healthboards.com/boards/back-problems/17904-spinal-cord-stimulator.html)

curvil 01-31-2003 06:43 PM

spinal cord stimulator
 
Hi all :wave:
Well I lasted 4 hrs on Tues. and 2hrs. on Wend. at work. ( I am a CNA) My neuro doc was not aware that the pain mange. doc had buckled under work comp. demands to send me to work, and such a fool as he was, he did what they wanted. anyway I had my reg. checkup with my neuro and let me tell you he was one wild guy, make a long story short he said I was an excellant candiate for a SPINAL CORD STIMULATOR I asked a few questions about it, he said first I would have to be seen by the doc who does this procedure, then have a phsyc. eval and then if I was the good candadet I would would have a temp. one installed in my spinal cord, (electrodes that are inserted into your spinal colum and hooked up to a battery pack) the battery pack for this temp. procedure would be on the outside of the body, when and if it works for the pain then a pernament battery pack is installed in your body under the skin, lot of risks involved I have been told, It is very expensive (work comp has informed me it is over $20,000) My attorney said to be prepared because w/comp. will find a way to stop my bennys just so they wont have to pay for this, if some of you remember, comp. has been giving me the shaft, I still havent heard from the IME report its been over 3 weeks, the attorney said he was calling comps. IME to see exactly when the report will or has been done, The attorney thinks that comp has gotten the report and dont like some of the things the IME has said and they are trying to get him to re frase it more to their liking (crooks) so geez now I lost track I will have to go back and read what I wrote, Doc. said the neurotin will do that (make you forget stuff) [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/confused.gif[/img]So I wont take up much of your time but does or has anyone ever had the sipnal cord stimulator and did it work? I just dont know what to do anymore this pain HAS to STOP but I dont want to be jumping at straws in order to get relief, Man what a life huh? not just for me but for all of us, who would have ever thought that the back could and does cause so much pain, when I think of how strong I used to be I wonder just how long ago has it been! I will have to research this stimulator thing quite extensively because I only have one back. thanks for listening to me and putting up with all my mispelled words :D love to all [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/love1.gif[/img]

------------------
laminectomy 1999
discectomy 2001
spinal fusion L5S1 2002
partial hardware removal
2002

nanna02 02-01-2003 03:33 AM

Hi there Shedevil!.. :wave:

I was wondering if the machine can also be called a 'TENS' Machine , which is placed ( taped) on the OUTSIDE of the back with wires and a battery attached.. sending impulses to stimulate the Spine to help relive pain?.. or is this not the one you talk about ?
I may be completely wrong, Your one sounds a really Top Level Machine .. but I was given the TENS type to try and it was SO painful within a few hours after using.. felt like I'd been run over by a bus !! Bruised the vertebrae , I had to stop using it, and stick to medication. I was told it works for some and then not for others ...

However , that is only MY Experience and I am sure there are lots of others who have had great success with the one you are contemplating using, Shedevil..
so I send you all the best in your search for relief ! [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/heart.gif[/img]
Love Belle NZ,, :) xxx,

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A Friend!

curvil 02-01-2003 04:34 AM

Hi Belle :wave:
No I have a tens unit and your right it works for some and not for others, Mine worked in the beginning but as time passed it dident work so well anymore so I dont use it, this SPINAL CORD STIMULATOR is similar but the leads are on the inside of your body and in the first procedure the battery pack so to speak is on the outside, if the trial run works then the surgeon will put the leads and the battery pack inside your body under the skin, usually they put it under the skin in your abdomen ,or in the back, or on the side I guess anywhere the patient would feel it would not be too problematic like when you lay down and stuff. I dont know if I want to try the temp. one all the stuff I have been reading about the drawbacks does not make me a happy camper ;)
So I thank you for your responce and your good wishes and your time [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/love1.gif[/img]

------------------
laminectomy 1999
discectomy 2001
spinal fusion L5S1 2002
partial hardware removal
2002
chronic back pain
failed back syndrome
right leg and foot numbness, loss of sensation, burning pain

[This message has been edited by shedevil (edited 02-01-2003).]

rosiedun 02-01-2003 05:44 AM

My question and my issue also at the moment is does worker's comp have the right to dictate what you do and do not with YOUR body. Isn't it up to you to decide if you want to try this new procedure.

I'm on 1800 mg. of neurontin as well and have really "blonde moments". My family tells me I forget total conversations I have with them. It's getting to the point that I want everything in writing so that I remember? Or am I going nuts???? Could be.

My point is really I don't want to take the drugs but get the very clear message from comp that if I don't their going to cut off my benefits. I'm rambling, sorry. I've tried to cut back but the pain get's worse. Physio is starting to help I think. It'd be better if I didn't have to drive 50 miles to and from when driving presents extreme issues for me.

I did receive a "Non-Economic Loss Award" this month from worker's comp. Their doctor's assessed my "permanent disability" to have a 38% impact on my life. When I questioned the adjudicator who came up with this number, she informed me that it was a very high number as far as back injuries go. In asking around, maybe it is. BUT, chronic pain, foot drop, drugs that make you not remember conversations with your children..........38% - how about 100.

On the positive side, my adjudicator and nurse case manager have totally backed off since receiving this assessment. Seems like I'm holding the cards right now.

Keep us posted on what you decide. I realize that American and Canadian comp laws differ but I question anyone else's right to make decisions regarding Your body.

Hoping you pain free moments.

Rosie

BAXTER 02-01-2003 08:56 AM

Hi She Devil, :wave:

I came very close to having the spinal cord stimulator implanted in me, but at the last minute, I decided against it, after learning that I would have to have yet further surgical procedures done to replace the batteries.

I was told the batteries would have to be replaced every year or two, depending on how much you use the stimulator for pain.
I was totally turned off after hearing that :(

Even though I had never heard any success stories about it, I was still willing to give it a try, for hopes that it might work for me.

I spoke to a few of my doctors previous patients, and none of them thought much of it, and really had wished they had never got it implanted.

I hate to bring you bad news, I just want to share my experience on my research. :(

Please talk to some of your doctors patients, as they know best.

If you decide to try it, I will be praying that you are one of the kucky ones that can find pain relief. :angel:

Please keep us posted :)

Have a great weekend,
Baxter [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/love2.gif[/img]



------------------
Two level laminectomy fusion L5-S1 & L2-3 done on 12/6/02.
Fifteen inch scar from the very top of butt crack (sorry), to the bra line.
BAK cages, rods & screws.(Titanium)
My pelvic bone was used for grafting.
Praying that the other two discs in between, won't have to be fused later, as I was told it was a possibility, due to the other two discs in between, not being in that great of shape.
Doc didn't want to fuse four levels, unless it is really necessary.
I would hate to repeat the surgery, as the recovery period, is so very painful.
I also have a free fragment in my T11-12 area, that I'm still refusing surgery for, at this point in time.
That surgery is way too dangerous for me to consider, until if affects my being able to walk.

curvil 02-02-2003 12:51 AM

Thanks Rosiedun and Baxter :wave:

Rosiedun, I am on 2700 mg of Neurotin and man I know about the lapse in memory, I dont know if I am coming or going :round:

Work Comp pulls all strings they can just to save $ they seem to be judge, jury, and the hangman about my health care, I am so sick of them [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/bang.gif[/img]
Your 38% disability is pretty darn good, my attorney said the administrative law judge here in my part of the state do not give the injured worker very high % wise, so that is a pretty good percent, thank you for your info, I am really scared about the whole procedure.

Baxter, thanks for your info, once again the sweet people on this board always take time out of their painful lifes to help others, If I were rich, I would help you all ;)

I couldent sleep again tonight went to bed at 10:30 and got up at 1:30, It's like this all the time and thanks to work comp. (who dont like paying for all my meds, pain meds, sleep aid) they tell my pain mangement dr. that I am (or was, they got to the pain doc. and he cut me way down on all my pain meds) taking too many meds, bull crap they just dont want to pay anymore, so I am calling my neuro and asking him for refill it seems that if you got hurt at work, they seem to take over and control your life and everything in it. I guess I am rambling sorry, well anyway thank you guys for responding it always makes me feel better when I get responces it somehow makes all of us one, [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/love2.gif[/img]

------------------
laminectomy 1999
discectomy 2001
spinal fusion L5S1 2002
partial hardware removal
2002
chronic back pain
failed back syndrome
right leg and foot numbness, loss of sensation, burning pain

PsychLea 02-02-2003 02:34 AM

Boy,

I'm glad I'm not the only one up at this hour [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/yawn.gif[/img]

I would be cautious about the spine stimulator as well and talk to other patients who have them. I was scheduled 2 years ago to have a gastric pacemaker(stimulator) implanted, until my insurance refused. I am glad I didn't get it, because traditional surgery seemed to help. There are many infection risks with putting the battery pack in and the wires and it can become a nitemare if your body rejects or reacts to having that much foreign material inside you. Plus the added aggravation of changing the battery.

I know how bad W/C cam be, had filed 2 claims in the past for lumbar injuries. I am glad that they are not involved in my care at all. I like the freedom of choosing my own NS and making my own decisions, but I understand if you can't work, it is the only option out there sometimes :(

Hope you can get some sleep. My pain meds gave me nitemares and woke me up, and now the pain is back and I just don't want to take anymore. [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/t_down.gif[/img]



------------------
God bless,

Lea

curvil 02-02-2003 02:43 AM

Hi Lea :wave:

It's nice to know that I am not the only awake :D
Yeah, the more I think about it the more I dont ant it.
But I am wondering what other options my doc. will have in store. I would rather have another surgery at this point than to get the stimulator cuz I really need to get rid of some of this pain, dont have many options left I'm afraid.
I think the L4 disc is herniated now, sure feels like it plus when I have to void lately I have to push on my tummy or I just dribble (sort of speaking) so I am thinking I may call doc Monday and say look I really dont want the stimulator what else can you do, I will post again after doc. calls me back, It was nice talking to you Lea, hope you can get some sleep [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/tired.gif[/img]
love to all [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/love2.gif[/img]

------------------
laminectomy 1999
discectomy 2001
spinal fusion L5S1 2002
partial hardware removal
2002
chronic back pain
failed back syndrome
right leg and foot numbness, loss of sensation, burning pain

isillyme 02-02-2003 07:16 PM

Hi I too was very close to having the stimulator implant, but when I was told you can't have an MRI once you have this, along with other things I decided against it.I can't remember the reasoning behind the mri part, I can't remember. I also began asking a couple other doctors about this procedure one was a pain management doctor, and the other was my family doctor and they too felt it wouldn't work for me so I decided against it. You are right WC is a major pain in the butt. WC at one point wanted to settle out with me, and I'm glad I didn't I'm only 37 years old, who knows what I'm going to be like at 47, or even 75. No amount of money can resolve this pain. I hope it works well for you, good luck with it. :angel:

------------------
canadate for the prodisc surgery. have ddd in
L4-5 also have tears in L3-4, and L5-S1. Had the IDET in 2000.

texashowdee 02-02-2003 10:54 PM

Hi, I too can very close to having the stimulator put in and I still might. I went to the last appointment befor they impanted the stimulator and at that apt. the pain doctor did a final test of where the pain was coming from and found that the sacroilliac Joint had pain in that area so he cancled the spinal stimulator until they could check out the SI joint pain. That was three months ago and I have had two SI joint cortisone injections (one month apart) The first worked wonderful with the second one not working at all so now we are back to square one of not know weather to try it or not.
My family doctor said it is a last ditch effort to control pain and he could not believe that the pain doctor at the Mayo clinic wanted to do it on me but like you I am tried of the pain. Love to hear from you. Dee

tootieb 02-03-2003 12:41 PM

Hi Shedevil- My mom had what is referred to as a dorsal column stimulator implanted into her back some years back and had it removed last year due to problems with it. It sounds alot like what you are describing. At first it worked well for her and the nerve pain, she has had 7 back surgeries in all, all in lumbar region. The wire or leads as the docs will referr to them my mom found out had never been FDA approved. When it was first implanted she got the stimulation from it for her nerve pain but about a year and a half later it was doing nothing for her, she kept going in to the doctors office and they would say it just needed adjusting etc... and they would about shock her to death with electrical charges. Then it just got where it was not doing anything no matter what they did in adjustments. The piece that they also implanted underneath her skin kinda to the side of her back looked as if it was going to rip out from underneath her skin as well. When her surgeon removed it I think he was shocked, this thing that was suppose to be so grand and great was disengrating in my moms back, the wires were rotted and very little left of them, parts of the stimulator fell apart he said in his hands as he took it out of her back as well.

I would be very scared to have this done. I know what you are saying about the nerontin as well as I had bad side effects from it and could not take it, my doc. switched me to Topmax instead and it has helped better then the high doses of Neurotin did for me at a 200mg dose. I have had 2 back surgeries the last one being a doozie and I am on 23 pills a day but I do have other health problems as well. My pain from my back was very severe before and after this last surgery, my doctors said there is not much else they can do for me since alot of the damage is permanent so they have put me on morphine now to help with the pain on top of all my other medications. I did not want to go on a continueing pain medication that was so strong and addicting but they said it was the best thing for me to do that I was going to end up damaging my liver taking percoset each day for the pain and two of those only would give me a hour of relief and still not total relief. I am on 120mg of morphine a day at the present time with them increasing doseages to control my pain which also worries me but atleast I do have some relief that last for awhile. I was going 3 and 4 days without closing my eyes so atleast now I can lay down and sleep 3 or 4 hours a night before having to get up. I am just so thankful to atleast be walking again even if I can't take giant steps it was one giant step for me to take a baby step so I just try to take one day at a time and pray for a miracle. I hope you will know what to do and I also would ask for several people that have had the stimulator put in them to call, my moms doc. was only giving out one womans number that had it done which had good results, sad to say she passed away 2 years after my mom had hers put in due to infection in her body from the stimulator and those wires, they kept treating her with the antibiotics not knowing where the infection was coming from till she passed away and had a autospy done on her. I do not mean to scare you here but you have to be so careful when it comes to doing what is right for your health.

BAXTER 02-03-2003 12:53 PM

Hi Tootieb, :wave:

Welcome :wave:

I'm so sorry to hear about your Mom, that was an awful thing for her to deal with.

The stimulator I almost had implanted, was also called a dorsal column stimulator.
It was not only supposed to help my lumbar, but they were going to extend it to address my free fragment in the T11-12 area.

I'm so glad that I ran as fast as I could.

Your Moms story, was similar to those of the patients I had spoken to, not one person had a good thing to say about it.

It usually is always a last resort, even though the doctors make it sound like a miracle cure.

I'm still waiting to hear a success story here.

I hope your pain improves for you, you have been through so much, I wish you well.

You will be in my thoughts and prayers :angel:

Be Well,
Baxter [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/heart.gif[/img]



------------------
Two level laminectomy fusion L5-S1 & L2-3 done on 12/6/02.
Fifteen inch scar from the very top of butt crack (sorry), to the bra line.
BAK cages, rods & screws.(Titanium)
My pelvic bone was used for grafting.
Praying that the other two discs in between, won't have to be fused later, as I was told it was a possibility, due to the other two discs in between, not being in that great of shape.
Doc didn't want to fuse four levels, unless it is really necessary.
I would hate to repeat the surgery, as the recovery period, is so very painful.
I also have a free fragment in my T11-12 area, that I'm still refusing surgery for, at this point in time.
That surgery is way too dangerous for me to consider, until if affects my being able to walk.

tootieb 02-03-2003 04:22 PM

Hello Baxter- I am so glad you did run as fast as you could after being told about the dorsal column stimulator. You may have just saved your life by doing so. It is so unreal when doctors that are suppose to be helping us to get better do things that is going to cause the exact opposite. It is one thing if a patient passes away or gets worse by doing something they know needs to be done and is going to help, but when a medical device is faulty and they are using it on patients anyway claiming it is the cure all that is something else indeed. That is putting greed and money in ones pockets before the concern for the patient and they forget all about the oath they took when they became a doctor. It sickens me to no end.

I myself am 38 years old and have had 8 surgeries 6 of those in the last 2 years , two of those surgeries was one for a faulty medical device as well and then another surgery to remove it that caused other problems in return. I have learned ask plenty of questios and do much research before letting them put anything in me again, it pays off in the end and most of the time always get more then one opinion as well in opposite states or cities as well so a doctor will speak out against the other ones decision if he does not think the other one gave the correct diagnosis or advice, I had that told to me by a one very trusting doctor that I am lucky enough to have now.

I hope you are doing well and I also will be praying for you. Prayers is what gets me from one day to the next and my trust and faith in the Lord to see me through. You hang in there as one day we will not have any pain nor suffering anymore and live where all will be peaceful without all the pain, suffering, death etc.. that we live in today.

BAXTER 02-03-2003 06:51 PM

Hi Tootieb, :wave:


Thank you so much for the reply and well wishes, I will double up my prayers for you tonight :angel:

I think we will both be fine in the long run, it's just a long road to get there [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/t_up.gif[/img]

Be Well,
Baxter [img]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/heart.gif[/img] :angel:



------------------
Two level laminectomy fusion L5-S1 & L2-3 done on 12/6/02.
Fifteen inch scar from the very top of butt crack (sorry), to the bra line.
BAK cages, rods & screws.(Titanium)
My pelvic bone was used for grafting.
Praying that the other two discs in between, won't have to be fused later, as I was told it was a possibility, due to the other two discs in between, not being in that great of shape.
Doc didn't want to fuse four levels, unless it is really necessary.
I would hate to repeat the surgery, as the recovery period, is so very painful.
I also have a free fragment in my T11-12 area, that I'm still refusing surgery for, at this point in time.
That surgery is way too dangerous for me to consider, until if affects my being able to walk.

tootieb 02-04-2003 04:33 AM

Hi Baxter, thank you for your kind words and words of encouragement. I will be praying that you will get there in time and get to feeling so much better. Your surgery was recent in Dec. of 2002 I see, so you do have a long ways to go. I am sure they told you it takes about a year to fully recover or to get back what you will get back correct? It will be one year for me March 6th 2003 so I do not have that much longer but things have only gotten worse with time, I had 4 disc removed, 4 artificial disc replaced in to where they were at, by artificial they took my disc bone and grinded them up with a compounding mixture that is suppose to harden and form new disc bone over time, nerve damage S1 and S2 and had previous back surgey April 2001 left with permanent nerve damage wit that one my disc had broken off and traveled around and done more damage to nerves, I never have gotten any feeling back in my right foot and have had severe nerve pain since that time, neither surgery has helped in regards to that. Degenrative disc disease,neuropathy and spinal stenosis. My cervical spine area is twisting is the best way I know how to put it and is causing my head to throw forward and I have head and neck, arm tremors alot, he wants to do surgery there and put on a halo to try and straighten me back upward, so far I have refused this to be done.
Other health problems and surgeries breast removal 1988, another breast surgery in Jan. 2001 so take our ruptured silicone implants that I was so dumb and listened to these docs tell me how safe they were that was so badly ruptured and left silicone through out my body, and I reacted violently to in trying to fight it off. I have had cancer in the cervix and a surgery for a growth in the uterus, sterilization tubes tied, and kidney surgery Jan. 2003. 8 surgeries in all and 6 of those one right after another in a 2 year time frame. I am wore out. I have lupus,fibromylgia, IBS, Migranes, ecezema, Raynauds and the list goes on and on. My health used to be so good when I was growing up but age 24 when I had my first surgery for breast removal things started going down very rapidly from that time on. Maybe now that I am getting all of this behind me when I am young to middle aged at age 38 I can sat back and be healthy when I get old aged and my life will turn around uhmmmmmm atleast I am hoping and praying for a miracle like that to happen if this world stands that long. It has been a long hard road but still I know again I can look around and see others in worse shape and my prayers and heart goes out to them. I will be praying for you and ask that you do say prayers in regards to my health situations as well. God Bless You and may the Lord heal each and every part of your body to make you well again.


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