High-Frequency Spinal Cord Stimulation
Since the late 1960’s patients suffering from chronic back / neck or arm / leg pain that could not get pain relief by surgery have had another pain management option to consider, spinal cord stimulation (SCS). SCS is a well-established pain treatment. It delivers.
Now there is a new and exciting advancement in this therapy. Nevro’s high frequency 10kHz HF10 is a form of spinal cord stimulation SCS. HF10 therapy has been proven to be more effective (as high as 2-3 times more effective) in relieving back / leg pain and neck / arm pain without the tingling side effects of it’s predecessors. Arch Advanced Pain Management is proud to be able to bring this treatment to patients in St. Louis, St. Charles, Wentzville and surrounding areas. HF10 is also being used to treat diabetic related nerve pain, chemotherapy damaged nerve pain, shingles pain, radiation therapy nerve pain, abdominal pain, severe Raynauds vasospasm and pelvic pain with success. electrical pulses to the spinal cord to mask or interrupt the transmission of abnormal pain signals to the brain. The pulses are sent by small electrodes placed in the epidural space that connect to a compact battery-powered generator, which is implanted under the skin. After it’s approval in 1989 by the FDA this procedure has grown in popularity. Today, over 15,000 patients a year undergo this procedure.
How does Spinal Cord Stimulation work?
Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) works by disrupting the pain signals coming from a patient’s nerve endings as they travel up the spine to the brain, thereby negating or minimizing the feeling of pain. This is accomplished by using an implanted generator which sends signals through a series of electrodes placed in the epidural space. What makes the SENZA-RCT system so special is Nevro’s use of high frequency (10kHz) pulses.
This change has not only made HF10 the first and only SCS therapy to deliver superior pain relief without paresthesia (a tingling or buzzing sensation) when compared to traditional SCS therapy, but also the only one approved for use without driving restrictions. Additionally, unlike traditional spinal cord stimulation therapies, HF10 will not unexpectedly shock the user while bending or twisting. The device can be turned on or off at any point by the user via short range remote. HF10 may be used for pain relief as the patient sleeps.
What is the Spinal Cord Stimulation procedure like?
The procedure itself is broken into two parts. There is a trial which lasts 5-7 days. This is a “try it before for you buy it” time in which the patient discovers if this therapy will work for them. Afterward we will discuss the patient’s experience and the permanent implant if the trial was successful. The trial procedure takes approximately 1-2 hours to allow for sedation, positioning and placement and is followed by another half hour to program the trial device. Diagnostics will be taken, and the system will be calibrated to the patient over the course of the 5-7 day trial.
After the trial period, the leads will be removed in the office. The patient will discuss with their doctor whether to continue with the full implant or discontinue the therapy. Although most patients decide to continue at the end of the trial, the implant is reversible should they decide not to continue with the high frequency spinal cord stimulator therapy. Should the patient decide to proceed with the implant, they will require one more minor, reversible surgery to place the epidural leads and implantable pulse generator (IPG) below the skin.
What does Spinal Cord Stimulation feel like?
The revolutionary part of the Nevro high frequency spinal cord stimulation, in particular, is that the patient doesn’t feel anything. With the HF10, under normal circumstances, there is an 70% to 80% chance of pain reduction.
How do I find out if I am a candidate?
You will need a consultation at Arch Advanced Pain Management to see if you are a candidate. The HF10 is not first line therapy but a very powerful option in resistant cases. If you suffer from chronic pain, and other treatments have not been successful, you may be a candidate.