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Thread: spinal cord stimulator for nerve pain

  1. #1

    spinal cord stimulator for nerve pain

    Hi,

    I'm fairly new on this forum but was active on another SCI forum as "wobbly". I'm c5/6/7 and l5/s1 following car crash and am incomplete and walking but with nerve pain, muscle pain and spasm. My new pain doctor has put me through for the E stim trial to see if the stimulator will improve my nerve pain. I believe it will be put into the cord at the cervical level. has anyone had this ? does it help? I'm on oxycodone 15mg daily (reduced from 40mg) with shortec for breakthrough baclofen 40mg daily duloxetine 120 mg daily and neurotriptiline 10mg. My hope is to reduce the meds so I can do more physical therapy as currently they are (or were when on 40 mg oxy) leaving me sedated and a shell of my former self. However obviously currently my pain levels are increasing as meds reduce. I cant reduce the nerve pain meds as results are horrific as I'm sure many of you know.

    I'm interested in anyone's experience with the cord stimulator good or bad also I heard there was a slightly different version which actual exercised the muscles in the back while it worked but I can't seem to find any information on having that fitted. I'm in the UK so it might be that the dear old NHS hasn't caught up with all the treatments that are available elsewhere.

    thank you in advance xxx Karen

  2. #2
    I don’t have any helpful info but my doctor also suggested that for me but I wasn’t to fond of putting somthing in my body like that. And I searched and searched and couldn’t find much fir people with sci that tried the implant. So I didn’t do it. Right now I’m ok with taking my hydrocodone. But if you end up doing it please update here I would like to know if it actually helps us. I just couldn’t find enough info on it to justify putting one in my spine and body and wasn’t to fond of having to charge it and everything that goes with it. I have enough problems I didn’t want to add a device to my body and you will probably be able to see it under the skin. Just some stuff to think about

  3. #3
    Senior Member Tim C.'s Avatar
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    C4/5 Asia A here with extreme chronic pain. Tried 2 generations of stimulator, results:
    1. Both times the stim just made me "vibrate" with no appriciable muting of pain. It felt like my finger was in a wall recptacle, just not as severe like a shock. Increasing the level merely increased the vibration v. oral meds like oxy that give you that "warm blanket" feel.
    2. Test 2 was the wireless version of test 1, albeit there are still electrodes installed in your spine. I thought that to sit with these sandwiched between my back and the back of my wheelchair couldn't be good, and it wasn't. Weight shifts, transfers etc, and any movement such as that when I used the arm bike exerciser ended up eventually ripping the electrodes out and was not good on my skin.
    Acknowledging that you being ambulatory the latter would not be at issue, and the test being relatively benign, any chance to move off of opiates is worth it,

  4. #4
    Senior Member alan's Avatar
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    Been there, done that. I'm officially C-5. The stimulator was first implanted in early spring of 1986. It was first placed in my lower thoracic spine. Didn't get any relief from various settings there, so was moved up to upper thoracic after several months . No luck there, either. The doctor then wanted to place it above my injury, but he couldn't push it past C-6 due to scar tissue. It was there for about four months, again trying various settings, and again no help with any pain relief. So, about a year after it was implanted, it was removed, and wound up wherever Hopkins medical waste wound up in 1987.
    Alan

    Proofread carefully to see if you any words out.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeramie630 View Post
    I don’t have any helpful info but my doctor also suggested that for me but I wasn’t to fond of putting somthing in my body like that. And I searched and searched and couldn’t find much fir people with sci that tried the implant. So I didn’t do it. Right now I’m ok with taking my hydrocodone. But if you end up doing it please update here I would like to know if it actually helps us. I just couldn’t find enough info on it to justify putting one in my spine and body and wasn’t to fond of having to charge it and everything that goes with it. I have enough problems I didn’t want to add a device to my body and you will probably be able to see it under the skin. Just some stuff to think about
    thank you - I think we are going ahead but it will be early Spring time with waiting lists but I will definitely update x

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Tim C. View Post
    C4/5 Asia A here with extreme chronic pain. Tried 2 generations of stimulator, results:
    1. Both times the stim just made me "vibrate" with no appriciable muting of pain. It felt like my finger was in a wall recptacle, just not as severe like a shock. Increasing the level merely increased the vibration v. oral meds like oxy that give you that "warm blanket" feel.
    2. Test 2 was the wireless version of test 1, albeit there are still electrodes installed in your spine. I thought that to sit with these sandwiched between my back and the back of my wheelchair couldn't be good, and it wasn't. Weight shifts, transfers etc, and any movement such as that when I used the arm bike exerciser ended up eventually ripping the electrodes out and was not good on my skin.
    Acknowledging that you being ambulatory the latter would not be at issue, and the test being relatively benign, any chance to move off of opiates is worth it,
    Thank you. I'll definitely let you know how I get on. I see that it seems to be good for diabetic neuropathy and those have been the drugs that have most helped with the pain (duloxetine) so am going to give it a try. I hate opiates. and I hate the assumption that because a number of people with relatively minor complaints have misused them that I get lumped in with the scare stories. I've literally gone from refusing the mega doses that they wanted to prescribe me in search of alternatives to now having to beg for my relatively low dose. unbelievable.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by alan View Post
    Been there, done that. I'm officially C-5. The stimulator was first implanted in early spring of 1986. It was first placed in my lower thoracic spine. Didn't get any relief from various settings there, so was moved up to upper thoracic after several months . No luck there, either. The doctor then wanted to place it above my injury, but he couldn't push it past C-6 due to scar tissue. It was there for about four months, again trying various settings, and again no help with any pain relief. So, about a year after it was implanted, it was removed, and wound up wherever Hopkins medical waste wound up in 1987.
    Thank you. I do have a huge amount of scar tissue so this is helpful. I'll be mindful of it if start having issues at the implant stage x

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