A spinal cord stimulator is a device that is used to block the pain from reaching the areas of the brain that regulate pain. A spinal cord stimulator acts like the pacemaker of the heart and sends electrical stimuli to the spinal cord. A spinal cord stimulator can help to treat conditions like chronic pain, nerve pain, back pain, phantom limb pain, and complex regional pain syndrome when all other conservative treatment methods have failed.
Before the procedure, William L Yancey MD will have taken your medical history and done a physical examination of your body to determine whether you are fit for the procedure. The doctor will then schedule you for the procedure another day. The procedure of inserting a spinal cord stimulator is under anesthesia and you have to sign an informed consent before getting the procedure.
You qualify to get a spinal cord stimulator if you suffer from chronic pain due to conditions like nerve abnormalities and complex regional pain syndrome. If you have these conditions, you can qualify to get a spinal cord stimulator if conservative pain management methods have failed to work for you; you can get a spinal cord stimulator if you respond well to the trial spinal cord stimulator.
An ideal candidate for a spinal cord stimulator is a person who does not smoke, because smoking causes delayed wound healing after surgery by vasoconstricting the blood vessels, a person who is not addicted to other drugs, and someone who does not have mental conditions like untreated depression. If you do not qualify to have surgery or you want to avoid surgery, you can benefit from a spinal cord stimulator.
Before having a permanent spinal cord stimulator inserted, you should have a spinal cord stimulator trial. If the spinal cord stimulator trial effectively relieves your pain, you can now get a permanent spinal cord stimulator. The spinal cord stimulator trial is an outpatient procedure in which the doctor places trial leads on the pain nerves that are beneath your skin.
The trial leads are then connected to an external spinal cord stimulator on your clothes. The doctor will then tell you to chart how the pain patterns change and then come back for removal after 7 days. During the placement of the permanent spinal cord stimulator, the doctor makes two incisions one at the lower abdomen for the generator and the other incision along the spinal cord for the electrodes.
The doctor will then use fluoroscopy to confirm whether the generator and the electrode are in position and then connect the electrodes to the generator. The doctor will then close the incision sites and put you on light sedation to reduce discomfort. His procedure has rare risks like bleeding, dural puncture, infection, and displacement or damage of the device and trauma to the spinal cord. You should inform your doctor if you experience any of these risk symptoms.
A spinal cord stimulator is a device that helps to reduce chronic pain by blocking pain signals from the brain. This device is used in the treatment of chronic pain in people who have failed to benefit from other methods of pain relief and have had a positive response to the trial procedure.