April 13, 2024

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Spinal Cord Stimulation for Back Pain

Louisiana Pain Specialists and Spinal Cord Stimulation: Louisiana Pain  Specialists: Pain Management

The American Association of Neurological Studies records that the average spinal cord or backbone length is nearly 18 inches. The backbone extends from the highest neck bone’s top to the highest lower backbone. It has various components, including more than 30 bones (vertebrae), disks, and nerves to convey chemical messengers from the brain to the rest of your body, transfer sensory information, support the body, and allow you to move. Sometimes though, you may need a professional spine specialist Macon, GA, because of long-lasting back pain. A recent Harris Poll shows that about three out of ten American adults, more than 70 million, have chronic low back pain.

Spinal cord stimulation is a popular treatment your spine specialist may recommend for alleviating back pain symptoms. Subsequently, below are things you need to know about spinal cord stimulation.

The working of spinal cord stimulation

The spinal cord stimulation treatment involves your health provider implanting a device near the spinal column. This device, a spinal cord stimulator, exposes your spinal cord to electrical signals.

You can always switch on or off the transmission of the electrical signals from the spinal cord stimulator. Also, the spinal cord stimulator may allow you to control the intensity of the electrical signals.

Exposing your spinal cord to intense and controlled electrical signals alters the balance of chemical messengers that registers and conveys pain from your back to all other sections of your body.

The trial phase of spinal cord stimulation

Often, your spine specialist may require you to undergo a spinal cord stimulator trial for a few weeks after the first visit before the full treatment.

The trialing of the spinal cord stimulator allows your health provider to test its effectiveness in providing relief against chronic pain without surgery.

If the spinal cord stimulator proves unsuccessful, your health provider will remove the device without causing any damage to the structures of your spinal cord, such as nerves.

However, if the treatment proves effective, you will need to undergo a full-term implanting of the device.

Complications of spinal cord stimulation

Back surgery has various complications, including failed back surgery syndrome.

According to the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP), failed back surgery syndrome (FBSS) is persistent back pain even after surgery.

On the other hand, as a minimally invasive procedure, spinal cord stimulation may be excellent for treating back pain because it rarely produces complications.

However, if there is an appearance of side effects, they may include stimulation of the wrong spinal nerves and persisting pain and discomfort due to failure to stimulate nerves.

The right candidate for spinal cord stimulation

You are likely the right candidate if conservative and invasive treatments do not significantly reduce chronic back pain.

Conservative or non-surgical treatments your doctor may utilize for reducing your chronic pain include pain relief medications, physical therapy, acupuncture, and injections.

Spinal cord stimulation may also alleviate chronic pain due to central pain syndrome, the irritation of the lining that protects spinal nerves, nerve damage caused by diabetes, or nerve malfunction.

Contact Spine Center Atlanta today to schedule an appointment with a spinal cord stimulation specialist and learn how the procedure can help manage chronic pain.