Have You Exhausted All Options to Treat Your Back Pain? Learn More About Spinal Cord Stimulation

In the wake of the opioid crisis, it’s understandable why anyone, doctor or patient, would be wary about using more and more pain medication. If you live with chronic pain, though, finding relief can be daunting. We understand how chronic pain can affect everything in your life from work to vacation. 

We also understand that conservative treatment options can’t bring everyone the kind of pain relief they deserve. Sachida N. Manocha, MD, and our team at Interventional Pain Center have another option that could help you live a more comfortable life. 

Spinal cord stimulation is a cutting-edge treatment for severe, chronic pain. This treatment is primarily for back pain resulting from spinal cord injury and post-surgery injury, but has so many other applications. Besides stopping back pain, spinal cord stimulation can alleviate symptoms of angina, nerve pain, and pain from an amputation. A spinal cord stimulator could be your ticket to better sleep, and a better life. 

What exactly is a spinal cord stimulator?

A spinal cord stimulator is a small, electric medical device that’s connected by wires to tiny sensors. These tiny sensors deliver mild electrical charges to areas of the spine, stopping you from feeling pain. Though pain is the body’s appropriate response to injury, pain can go past the amount of time that you need to heal, interfering with your everyday life. If the treatment is successful, patients find their pain significantly reduced, allowing them more freedom to enjoy everyday things. 

I’m in pain now. May I walk in and get one? 

Dr. Manocha needs to perform a diagnostic exam for you before he clears you for the procedure. With Dr. Manocha’s go-ahead, we schedule you for a trial procedure. A trial run involves inserting temporary electrodes into the affected areas of the spine and controlling them with a device outside of your body. Just like with the permanent device, the electrodes send mild signals to halt the transmission of pain from your spine to your brain. After a week, if you’ve found that your pain is reduced by half or more, the trial is a success, and we schedule you for a permanent implant. 

For your permanent spinal cord stimulator, Dr. Manocha makes a small incision in your back, and then another one in your buttocks or in your abdomen. The device goes into the lower part of your body, and the permanent electrodes go into your back. After connecting them, Dr. Manocha tests the device to ensure that everything’s working properly. The final implantation takes less than two hours, and then a friend or loved one can take you home. Within a month, and after at least one check-in with us, you should be fully healed and ready for light activity.  

About 60,000 spinal cord stimulators are implanted annually and the device is generally well-tolerated and successful in its treatment.

We’d be happy to answer any questions you have about spinal cord stimulation and go over your case in detail to see if it’s an option for you. You can make an appointment at one of our offices in Newark or Worthington, Ohio, over the phone or through our online scheduling tool.

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