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Spinal cord stimulator

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2 years 6 months ago #24149 by Looking forward
Looking forward replied the topic: Spinal cord stimulator
This is very interesting reading all the comments. Thank you.

I'm due to have the permanent implant done early December and hoping against hope it works for me. I have had the procedure cancelled once to due lung issues so hoping it goes ahead.

I suffer with chronic pain due to severe cervical disc degeneration disease affecting C5, C6 and C7. I also have severe arthritis all through my chest and horrific migraines and COPD. Can anyone advise if the stimulator will relieve the other pain issues (not just the disc pain) and a rough guide to how long the hospital stay is?

Please feel free to give me any advice or suggestions. I haven't had a chance to get all the questions off my surgeon after the last cancellation.

Many thanks in advance.

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2 years 6 months ago #24151 by grappers
grappers replied the topic: Spinal cord stimulator
Hi looking forward,
When I had my final implant it was only an overnight stay in hospital, mine was implanted for low back and leg pain, been in for over 2 years, just before the interactive model came onto the market, which automatically senses change in body position and compensates the stimulation, I did get the rechargeable battery instead of the 10 year non rechargeable type.

Don

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2 years 6 months ago #24155 by Looking forward
Looking forward replied the topic: Spinal cord stimulator
Thanks Don.

That's good to know. Yes, mine will be the rechargeable also.

Can I ask, when you had the trial, did you have any pain with it? I was on the lowest setting and was in agony as I had what felt like contractions. They said I was super sensitive and the stimulator would need manual adjustment.

Looking forward to having at least a bit of a pain free life!

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2 years 6 months ago #24157 by grappers
grappers replied the topic: Spinal cord stimulator
Hi Looking forward,
The only pain from the trial was for a couple of days where they inserted the leads, after that it was when the leads accidently got pulled or caught up in my clothing, or dropping the external battery, I was put out completely even for the trial to have them implanted, so when I woke I had control over the pulse, it wasn't running until I turned it on.
After getting the final implant, I had a lot of tinkering of the programs to get them right, as I have said before I have multi programs which to choose from, so I can change them depending on pain and what I am doing, even though they are set in the machine I can manually change the frequency of those programs.
It made a big change in my life, it was the last resort, having years of getting very little sleep, I can get from 4-6 hrs a night now without waking up in agony.

Don

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2 years 6 months ago #24158 by bluerob
bluerob replied the topic: Spinal cord stimulator
Sorry if this is a stupid question.

How much difference is there between these implants compared to those little devices you can purchase that have sticky pads which you place onto your back or even head if you have a head ache?

I bought a little device called a Pain Pod which has about 20 different settings. I can also plug leads into a pair of thongs (on your feet type). This device is similar to a Tens machine I think?

It cost me $300, but, I bought the lot, including spare sticky pads and the thongs (on your feet).

Thanks again for the replies and hope you're all ok today.

Cheers

Rob

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2 years 6 months ago #24165 by grappers
grappers replied the topic: Spinal cord stimulator
Hi bluerob,
The main difference being with the stimulator the leads are placed in your spinal column, the electronic pulses generated are used to block the flow of pain signals travelling to the brain through the nerve paths that run through the spinal column, external tens units and such are used to stimulate muscles and increase blood flow to the areas affected.
A stimulator operates 24/7, whereas tens machine and such have time limits on which they can run, they are limited to small areas, whereas a stim can target numerous nerves, blocking multiple pain sources.
Mine targets pain from my middle back down to my toes, getting the right lead placement is essential, as is get the programming right, these things have countless modulation to adjust, more than one program can be programed into a single mode of delivery, like I have said I have seven different programs to choose from, some a single programs, others combine 2 or more into one, I have ones that run none stop, others that cycle through 15 seconds on and 15 seconds off, I can even change the modulation within these programs with my control unit, even the ones with 2 or more programs combined, each of the programs comes up with a slide menu when you go to the program function, if there are 2 or more programs combined each program has a separate slide menu function you can change, either up or down in the strength of the modulation.
The support once implanted is fantastic, if you want to change programs, add new ones or have them tweaked, it is never a problem, you are given the phone number of the tech, who will always bend over backwards to help, hope this answer your question.
These devices are usually the last chance for many people who either don't get pain relief from medication, or as in my case are intolerant to pain medications, but like all medical intervention, it doesn't work for all people, some get total pain relief, some don't, mine doesn't reduce pain completely, it does reduce the pain though, making living with pain a lot easier, any reduction has got to be a good thing, and advances in the technology is happening in leaps and bounds in targeting pain with these devices.
Don

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