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Is a Spinal Cord Stimulator Right for Me?

Is a Spinal Cord Stimulator Right for Me?

If you haven’t had success eliminating your back pain with medications and injections, you might be hoping for another option. We can help!

Dr. Ronak Patel and our team are well-versed in using spinal cord stimulation as a method to treat your pain. When you visit us at Regenerative Spine and Pain Institute in Plainsboro and Manalapan Township, New Jersey, we provide you with a comprehensive exam and a full assessment to determine if the procedure is right for you.

Our requirements

We first give you a comprehensive exam to determine your overall physical condition. We also learn about your previous treatments and surgeries. Our team goes the extra mile, providing a psychologist to help understand the emotional trauma you’ve experienced due to your chronic pain and to give you the most successful outcome.

To qualify for a spinal cord stimulator, we have certain requirements that include:

We also require prior treatment if you have depression or a drug addiction. In addition, we recommend that you seek treatment in the beginning stages of your chronic pain for a successful outcome.

Understanding how the trial works

For your trial period procedure, we first give you local anesthesia or sedation. Dr. Patel then uses fluoroscopy, which is a type of X-ray that guides him and helps him locate the injection site. 

He inserts a hollow needle into the epidural space of your spine, which has thin, insulated wires with electrodes. When you’re alert, you provide feedback as Dr. Patel applies stimulation to the different areas of pain. Once he establishes the spots to cover, you’re sedated again while he makes adjustments.

The electrical contacts connect to a pulse transmitter that you wear on the outside of your body on a belt. During the trial period, you have a wire connected to the external neurostimulator that’s taped to your back to hold it in place.

You have a handheld controller to send the amount of current needed to relieve your pain. If this trial period proves to be successful, then you’re a candidate for a spinal cord stimulator.

The spinal cord stimulator procedure

To place your permanent spinal cord stimulator, the procedure is almost identical to the trial procedure. However, Dr. Patel places permanent electrodes and implants a generator under your skin, which usually goes in your abdomen, upper chest, or upper buttocks.

If your spinal cord stimulator is non-rechargeable, it can have a 2-5 year battery life. If you opt for the rechargeable system, it can last you 10-25 years or longer.

To find out if a spinal cord stimulator is the answer to your chronic back pain, contact our friendly office staff by phone or online today. 

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