Hi, everyone. I am a complete T10 paraplegic (12.5 years) and I currently have a SCS, one that allows MRIs, with a single lead placed in the spinal canal for severe pain in my right hip. While the SCS does help a ton, my pain has gotten much, much worse in the 2.5 years that I've had it in and my pain management doctor cannot pinpoint the cause of the pain. I've had xrays, CT scans, and countless other procedures in trying to figure it out. A hip and knee specialist that my PM doctor referred me to said that an MRI is the best bet to figuring out the cause of the pain but there is a strong impedance in the bottom contact. I am unable to have the MRI because of this, so I convinced my PM doctor that we should remove the current SCS so I can finally get the MRI and then put it back in ASAP. It was then that he mentioned a paddle lead would be the best bet to get better pain relief. The problem is that I have a large amount of scar tissue in the T9-T10 area. The current lead wasn't placed where he wanted because of this, so he told me that a neurosurgeon would have to remove the scar tissue and then place the paddle lead where it needs to be. I naively thought that the process wouldn't be too bad, but I just did some research and saw that a laminectomy or laminotomy would be required for a paddle lead to be placed. I went from not worrying too much about the surgery to now having so much anxiety that I'm shaking. I know that we are at a much, much higher risk of heterotopic ossification, bursitis, osteopenia/osteoporosis, arthritis, etc After seeing my xrays and CT scans, the hip specialist said that while I will eventually have to have 2 hip replacements, which is quite ironic, I won't need them for quite some time. I guess my questions are:

Has anyone had regular leads and switched to paddle leads? If so, how much better was the pain relief? If not going from regular leads to paddle leads, how much relief did you get from a paddle lead?

As I'm sure we all know, we can handle a bit more pain than the average person since so many of us are in pain every second of the day. I know everyone is different but how long was your recovery and how bad was it?


I apologize for the long paragraph, but I wanted to give as much information as I could to make any reply easier on you all. I'm just sort of panicking after reading about the laminectomy/laminotomy and recovery things. The only things that I've found about paddle leads are scientific studies and people posting about how much agony the recovery was. I'd much rather have a conversation with those that have had the procedure or have been around someone that has.

Thank you your time and have a great day!