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All Posts Tagged: spinal cord stimulation



Spinal cord stimulation is a therapy which used to masks pain signals before they reach the brain by delivering low-level electrical signals to the spinal cord or to specific nerves to block pain signals to reaches to the brain.

Who is a candidate?

Patients selected for spinal cord stimulation usually have had chronic debilitating pain for more than 3 months in the lower back, leg or arm. They also commonly have had one or more spinal surgeries. You’re a candidate for spinal cord stimulation if you have;

  • Failed conservative therapies
  • You would not benefit from any additional surgery.
  • The pain is caused by a correctable problem and should be fixed.
  • You do not want further surgery because of the long recovery or risks associated with it. Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) sometimes can also be chosen over a large, complex spine surgery.
  • You are not suffering from untreated depression or drug addiction; these should be treated prior to having a SCS.
  • You have no such medical conditions that would keep you from undergoing implantation.
  • You have had a successful trial of SCS.

What happens during the SCS procedure?

During the procedure of spinal cord stimulation, a device that delivers the electrical signals is implanted in the body through a needle placed in the back near the spinal cord.  Then a small incision is made to place the pulse generator in the upper buttock. The patient may turn the current on and off or adjust the intensity of the signals.

Benefits of spinal cord stimulation technique

Potential benefits which spinal cord stimulation is offering are;

  • It improves the ability to participate in activities of daily living
  • Effective or beneficial for extremities, back, and/or leg pain relief
  • Gives power to manage your own treatment procedures


Risks of SCS

There is no surgery without risks. Specific complications associated with SCS are;

  • Battery failure and/or battery leakage
  • Cerebrospinal fluid leak
  • Persistent pain at the stimulator site or at the electrode
  • Allergic response to implant materials
  • Generator migration and/or local skin erosion
  • A pocket of clear fluid or seroma at the implant site. Usually seromas disappear by themselves but may require a drain
  • Lead migration, which often result in changes in stimulation and reduction in pain relief
  • Weakness, clumsiness, paralysis, numbness, or pain below the level of implantation

Pain management institute is helping people to cure acute and chronic long term pain to resume a normal life style. PMI has provided many treatments like stem cell therapy and many others.

For more details call on 815.412.6166

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Spinal Cord Stimulation Patient Criteria and Potential Benefits

Chronic pain is termed as long-lasting pain that keeps going than the standard recuperation time frame or that goes with a chronic health condition. Since this pain isn’t protective and isn’t an aftereffect of current injury, it is indicated to as “pathological” and is consequently treated as a condition, not as a symptom. Chronic pain may keep individuals away from working, eating appropriately, taking part in physical activity or enjoying life.

In the procedure of spinal cord stimulation, the technique is utilized to relieve pain that delivers a low-voltage electrical current constantly to the spinal cord in order to block the sensation of pain. Spinal cord stimulation is the most generally utilized implantable neurostimulation innovation for management of pain syndromes.

As per the research, around 50,000 neurostimulators are implanted worldwide every year. Furthermore, the procedure of spinal cord stimulation is broadly recognized, and also FDA- approved medical treatment in order to treat chronic pain of the trunk and limbs, that include:

  • Back
  • Legs
  • Arms

Moreover, there are three spinal cord stimulation devices types:

  • In the case of conventional systems, this needs minor effort on the patient’s end for maintenance. Yet, a slight surgery is needed to replace the power source when it runs out.
  • The second one is the radiofrequency. In this procedure, the system is intended to support therapy over long periods at the highest output level. On account of its powerful abilities, this system is appropriate for the most difficult cases in which there is complex, multi-extremity pain. With the radiofrequency system, the patient is required to wear an outer power source to trigger stimulation.
  • The recent advancement in the spinal cord stimulation is the rechargeable system. In this case, the patient is required for recharging the power source in case it runs low. As per the fact, a rechargeable system commonly keeps going longer than a customary system.

The Criteria of Patient Selection for Spinal Cord Stimulation:

  • Pain isn’t related with malignancy
  • Unsatisfactory reaction to conventional treatment for at least six months
  • Revision surgical procedure is impossible or would have a low possibility of success
  • No pacemaker or other medical contraindications
  • No critical psychiatric complications, including somatization
  • Readiness to stop unsuitable medication use before implantation
  • No related litigation
  • Capability to give informed consent for the technique

What Are the Potential Advantages of Spinal Cord Stimulation?

This technique is a type of neuromodulation that works in a way of blocking pain signals in nerves from getting the brain. Furthermore lessening pain, and other vital advantages are as follows:

  • Enhanced functioning
  • Better activity and mobility
  • Lessened opioid [narcotic] use
  • Less requirement for other pain medications
  • Less reliance on bracing
  • Better sleep

The results differ from individual to individual, and it is critical to comprehend that spinal cord stimulation may work in a way to help decrease pain, yet not dispose of it.

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Are you searching for back pain reliever?

The spinal cord is the foremost collection of nerves carrying nerve impulses to and from the brain to the rest of the body. Rings of bone, called vertebrae, are located around the spinal cord. These bones make up the spinal column or back bones.

Spinal cord injury can be a result by direct trauma to the spinal cord or a consequence of compression, damage from inflammation, infections, bleeds or clots, neoplasms, or spinal arthritis.

Spinal cord damage results in a failure of function, such as mobility or sensation. In majority of the people who have sensitive, traumatic spinal cord injury, the spinal cord is not fully detached but is bruised or torn. Spinal cord injuries may be an outcome of falls, diseases like polio, motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries, industrial accidents, gunshots and physical assaults, among many other causes. If the spine is fragile because of another condition, such as arthritis, slight injuries can cause spinal cord trauma. A lot of pain is suffered by the body when issues related to spinal cord arise.

Spinal cord stimulation is a remedy that masks pain signals before they reach the brain. A small device, similar to a pacemaker, is fixed in the body to transport electrical pulses to the spinal cord. It aids patients towards better management of their chronic pain symptoms and decrease the use of opioid medications. It may be an option if you suffer chronic back, leg or arm pain and have not found relief with other therapies like surgeries. Spinal cord stimulation is recommended when other treatments have not been successful, when surgery is not likely to help, or when surgery has failed. However, the device is not for everyone; consult with your doctor to see if the procedure is right for you.

Spinal cord stimulation does not eradicate the source of pain, it merely interferes with the signal to the brain, and so the amount of pain relief varies for each person. Also, some patients find the tickly sensation obnoxious. For these comprehensions, trial stimulation is carried out before the device is permanently fixed. The objective for spinal cord stimulation is a 50-70% decrease in pain. Nevertheless, even a minute amount of pain diminution can be noteworthy if it helps you to execute your daily activities with less pain and reduces the amount of painkillers you take.

Spinal cord stimulation does not work for everyone. If unsuccessful, the implant can be removed and does not damage the spinal cord or nerves. Some patients may find the sensitivity unpleasant. In other cases it may not cover the entire pain area. With trial stimulation, the experts can sense whether or not, this method is working for the patient. If the procedure proves to be a failure, the trial wires can be detached, causing no damage to the spinal cord or nerves.

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Spinal cord stimulation for back pain relief


Candidates who have tried all the other traditional treatments and surgery and still experience back pain can have an option to once think of the spinal cord stimulation

Spinal cord stimulation proclaims minimal electrical stimulation to nerves along the vertebral column, altering or blocking the nerve activity in a distinguished manner  to reduce and sometimes eliminate the feeling of pain reaching the brain

The treatment was first used to treat severe back pain in 1967. Later it became medically approved by the FDA. The spinal cord stimulation is used to treat pain in the trunk, arm or legs

Spinal cord stimulation process is also called neuro stimulation, that is managed by gentle electrical vibrations to that interrupt with pain messages and divert them from reaching the brain, a small device is inserted near the vertebral column, the device has the similar function as the cardiac pacemaker, which can be called by some people as the pacemaker device for pain

The chronic pain conditions that respond well to spinal cord stimulation

The spinal cord stimulation is used to treat a number of painful conditions that include;

  • Failed back surgery syndrome
  • Cervical and lumbar radiculitis
  • Neuropathy
  • Complex regional pain syndrome
  • Other painful conditions that respond well to spinal cord stimulation process area;
  • Inflammation and scarring of the outer layers of the spinal nerves
  • Back pain that continues to the legs
  • Neck pain with or without arm pain
  • Complex regional pain syndrome
  • Angina pains

Trial Period

Distinctive of other treatment that requires surgery, spinal cord stimulation can be done as a trial for a few days before a candidate decides for implantation of the device and experience any negative effects, the experimental period is a part of two step verification process  to identify if the candidate is suitable for therapy, if the patient does not decide to continue with the treatment the device is taken out with the help of small incision which is covered with a bandage

The imaging test is necessary to be done because the spinal cord stimulation does not work for every individual, the people who are suitable candidates for the treatment experience almost half reduction in pain, and improved routinely task

Specialists who can perform spinal cord stimulation

The specialist who can well perform  spinal cord stimulation process can be

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Conditions Treated with Spinal Cord Stimulation & its Potential Benefits!!

Tired of opting for the traditional measures and treatments that have given no benefit to your chronic back and neck pain? Choose spinal cord stimulation method; an implantable stimulator that will prevent the pain signals from reaching towards the brain. The spinal cord stimulation is said to be as:

  • An alternative treatment when conventional therapies and medications have not provided any adequate pain relief
  • As a cost effective treatment measure
  • A very reasonable procedure, as compared to other surgical methods

Here are the Chronic conditions treatable

Failed back surgery is known to be as the most common condition in which, spinal cord stimulation procedure is found as the most effective one. The procedure has been experienced as the best and successful one in the situation when one or more surgeries have failed to alleviate the pain in the back, leg or arm. In the below elaborated conditions, spinal cord stimulation is utilized:

Neck pain

The chronic neck pain including the arms and shoulders


The situation in which the spinal nerves become inflamed painfully and the meninges that is the protective layers have become scarred

Complex regional pain syndrome

A progressive disease that is said to come under severe pain and swelling

Peripheral Neuropathy

Constant burning pain felt in the legs as a result when most of the nerves far away from the legs have started dying off


A condition, because of which chest pain, shortness of breath and fatigue is experienced

You are the most prospective candidate for spinal cord stimulation method if either you have failed to find relief from the traditional treatments or you are the victim of the above mentioned conditions

Spinal Cord Stimulation is Not Advised If:

Apart from all other information, spinal cord stimulation is not good for the individuals who:

  • Are using a cardiac type pacemaker
  • Are suffering from an infection, right at the location where the device in spinal cord stimulation is supposed to be implanted
  • Are the victims of severe depression
  • Are the patients of drug addiction

If you or any of your loved one is suffering from chronic back or neck pain or any other body pain, get a professional advice from Dr. Zaki Anwar by placing an appointment at (815) 464-7212). He is an expert anesthesiologist and certified Pain Management Specialist who has been practicing pain relief techniques for the past several years with effective results.

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