SPINAL CORD STIMULATOR FAQ

Will SCS cure my chronic pain?

SCS is not a cure for pain. It is a therapy that may help reduce your pain to a manageable level so you can return to a more normal lifestyle.

What is the difference between traditional neurostimulation and BurstDR Stimulation?

With traditional neurostimulation, a small device is used to interrupt pain signals before they reach the brain. The painful feeling is replaced with a different feeling, which some describe as a tingling or massaging sensation.

BurstDR™ stimulation works similarly. However, BurstDR stimulation was designed to manage pain more naturally. It works by mimicking natural patterns found in the brain—modifying pain signals and changing the way your body perceives pain.1 Most patients do not feel any sensation with BurstDR stimulation.2,3 St. Jude Medical offers both therapies—giving you the best chance at success.

Are there any risks with neurostimulation?

Risks associated with the procedure and use of a neurostimulation system include infection, swelling, bruising, undesirable changes in stimulation, and the loss of strength or use in an affected limb or muscle group (e.g., paralysis). Talk to your doctor about the possible complications associated with neurostimulation.

Is neurostimulation similar to T.E.N.S.?

TENS stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. Although neurostimulation and TENS systems both deliver electrical pulses, they are very different in how they work and what type of pain they are designed to manage. A TENS unit is an external device that delivers pulses through pads that are placed directly on the skin over the painful area. TENS is generally not effective for severe chronic pain.

Is this therapy covered by insurance?

The temporary system and implanted system are typically covered by most major insurance plans, Medicare and workers’ compensation programs. Contact us  and we can help with your insurance company to determine your coverage.

Will neurostimulation allow me to reduce my pain medications?

Every patient responds differently to neurostimulation. Many patients are able to decrease the amount of pain medications they take. Other patients are able to change the type of medication they take.

Can a neurostimulation system help me with pain in multiple areas?

In order to help with pain in more than one area, your doctor would need to place the leads (thin wires that deliver electrical pulses) in the right locations. Afterward, he or she could program your neurostimulation system to cover the different areas. To help you get the best possible results, make sure your doctor knows where your pain areas are located.

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