Chronic, treatment-resistant back pain can have a devastating impact on your life, but when all else fails, neurostimulation offers genuine hope. If you're a suitable candidate for neurostimulator implantation, orthopaedic spine specialist Evan O'Brien, MD, and Chris Hennessey, PA, at Woodbury Spine, can help. At their practice in Woodbury, New Jersey, they implant state-of-the-art neurostimulator devices that allow you to control your pain without medication. To benefit from their expertise in neurostimulator implantation, call Woodbury Spine, to book an appointment today.
Neurostimulator Q & A
What is a neurostimulator?
A neurostimulator or spinal cord stimulator
is an implantable device measuring just a few
inches across. The device delivers mild
electrical impulses into the epidural space
surrounding your spinal cord via thin wires
These electrical impulses act on the pain
signals your spinal nerves transmit to your
brain. It changes the signals so your brain
doesn't receive pain messages.
In some neurostimulator devices, the
sensations change to a tingling known as
paresthesia, while in certain newer models,
you don't feel anything, just relief of pain.
You control your neurostimulator with a
handheld remote control unit. Using the controller, you can adjust the settings to match the degree of pain you're experiencing.
For example, if you find your pain is worse when you get out of bed, you can increase the intensity of the electrical impulses to compensate.
Why might I need a spinal cord stimulator?
You might benefit from having a neurostimulator or spinal cord stimulator if you have severe, chronic neck or back pain and no other treatments prove effective.
Patients with spinal pain typically improve within a few months of starting a personalized treatment program under Woodbury Spine’s care. These programs consist of physical therapies, medication, and, for persistent cases, treatments such as steroid injections and radiofrequency ablation.
If you've had these treatments, but are still experiencing disabling pain, Dr. O'Brien might suggest a neurostimulator trial.
What does neurostimulator implantation involve?
Before you undergo the full implantation procedure, Dr. O'Brien arranges a trial using an external neurostimulator.
Under anesthetic, he inserts the leads that deliver the impulses into your spine, and you wear an external neurostimulator for a week or so. During this time, you can evaluate how effective the treatment is for your pain.
If the trial is successful, you undergo another procedure where Dr. O'Brien implants the permanent neurostimulator under the skin of your abdomen or buttock. The unit is small enough to be hidden by your clothes, and it doesn't make any sound.
When nothing else is working for your spinal pain, neurostimulator implantation offers hope of relief. Find out if you're a good candidate for neurostimulation by calling Woodbury Spine today to schedule an appointment.