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Anybody have a SCS implant?

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Chat' started by Uncle Steve, Oct 26, 2014.

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  1. Uncle Steve

    Uncle Steve Low-Roller

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    If you have to ask, I can safely assume you don't have a Spinal Cord Stimulator implant. My pain Dr is highly recommending I explore this option further. Will be making the initial Dr consultation appointment soon as my wife's schedule is freeing up and she can accompany me. Not a requirement but I think her outlook , ideas, and opinions are a must.

    Then we would schedule a psych exam. (Not sure why they need this but it is required). Then a test implant and if that is successful , the final implant of the MedTronics unit.

    Hope to get rid of my wicked limp and most of the pain killers I take.

    Kept putting this off until the other day I was talking with a couple I know. The husband had a back surgery and knew I have the same problem. A lady I did not know was standing there and when the wife asked what I had up concerning my back pain , I mentiond the SCS. The lady instantly told me she has had one for 6 years and loves it. Instead of pain she has a slight tingling sensation in her back.

    My pain Dr is very against lumbar fusions. He says most people are back soon after the fusion with the next disc up ruptured. A real possibility since my lumbars are all bulged. Except for my L4-5-S1 which are ruptured. Also have aruptured T but it is manageble with an occasional epidural. Uo to 15 in my lumbar.
     
  2. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    No idea what the SCS is except for your description.

    I had two partials on L3 about 2 years apart. The 3rd time, 3 years after #2, I gave into the fusion procedure. That was 18+ years ago and (knock on wood) and I've never had any more trouble. Granted, a few Advils needed here and there, but no prescriptions.

    My fusion, left me with a ~5 inch scar. These days I read where they do it using the microscopic procedures and tools and you are back on your feet quite soon.

    Good luck to you!! Until you've experienced it first hand, people don't understand how much pain it can cause and how debilitating it can be.
     
    Christmas
  3. Snidely

    Snidely VIP Whale

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    Here's my 2 cents from someone that knows next to nothing about this. The surgery is permanent. Sometimes it works and sometimes things get worse. So, with surgery you have a good up side and a bad down side possible. What is the downside with the SCS? If the risk is a lot lower than surgery and the upside is the same as surgery, I'd get the device. If it doesn't work or you change your mind, you can always have it removed. (easy for me to say)

    This device could be life altering in a very good way for you. You've procrastinated long enough and sucking down pain pills is no way to live the rest of your life.
     
  4. Uncle Steve

    Uncle Steve Low-Roller

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    Not sure of the success rate of the implant. They implant a test electrode and leave it in with an external controller for 3 to 7 days. If it works you can choose to proceed with a permenant electrode and control unit.

    I had a surgery back in 2000 when I first ruptured the disc. They just removed the protruding disc and some of the bone to make a larger channel for the nerve. Took me from Feb 2000 to Aug 2001 to get back to full speed. They called it a partial discectomy/laminectomy. If I had taken that as a sign I needed to slow down I might have not been in as bad of shape now. Now I have retired from the volunteer fire dept and rented out my irrigated farm ground.

    The electrode is implanted next to the spinal cord and a control unit is implanted either in the stomach or back. You get your own remote control to adjust it with. You can get a rechargeable battery. The woman told me she charges hers one a month. The newest units will still allow you to get an MRI. I assume they use non magnetic metals like copper , or aluminum. This is the same theory used in treating Parkinsons patients according to my Dr. The electrical impulse fools the brain into not interpreting the pain. As far as I know it can be removed at any time. The downside would be the scar tissue left by the operations to install and remove it. That becomes an issue for you if you end up requiring more surgeries. Oh and the usual warnings that it can mess you up or even kill you. Even got that warning when I got a root canal.

    I didn't post this looking for sympathy. I have a pretty good life. Just thought if someone had one we could discuss it or maybe anyone looking at it could bounce it off others. At 52 I am not ready to live on the couch the rest of my life. Really want to take the wife back to Vegas and walk the strip with her. Have lived an active life being outdoors farming and spent 21 years with the volunteer Fire Dept. Used to hunt a lot before it got to taking too much of my farming time and cut back after getting married (My wife doesn't even want to be in the house when I fix game ).

    Thanks for the comments. Always interesting to get another perspective on things. And yes taking pills is not a good thing. If you try to take enough to keep you from having pain you will end up unable to function and developing a tolerance that will leave them like taking tums. I just take enough to take the rough edge off when it gets bad. Still I can tolerate a dose that would leave most people unconscious.

    Joe hope you continue your pain free life. Talked to a guy who got a fusion in the 70s. Said he has never had a problem with it. Then there is a guy here who has had 5 surgeries. No guarantees either way.
     
  5. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    The psyck exam is for what many would consider obvious. This is a big step.

    With that said, and my utmost faith in folks here, there are way better places to get advice. Just sayin.... for your own health.
     
  6. Uncle Steve

    Uncle Steve Low-Roller

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    I consider this more like coffee shop talk except the crowd has a lot bigger pool of experience than your local place. And everybody I meet knows of a back Dr who works miracles. And every late night tv program has a device that is a miracle cure for 7 simple payments of $99.99. You can get a second one free with separate S&H. (Haven't lost my sense of humor yet)
     
  7. LolaDoggie

    LolaDoggie VIP Whale

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    I don't know anything about this surgery. But, I've had several large and small surgeries and treatments and diagnostics that required me to be under general. I don't regret my surgeries. I just wish they had done the one job in one shot instead of spreading it out. But, I don't regret it. I had several complications and infections and damage and whatnot. I'm still working on recovery. Still worth it compared to what was going on before.

    I have known several people who have put off day surgeries until things got ridiculous and then really smacked themselves in the head afterwards. One that comes to mind right now is a friend who put off gall bladder surgery. She knew her husband would not put up with that kind of thing so she just didn't tell him. Finally ended up with infection and blockage that damn near killed her and what could have been a key hole day surgery turned into a big deal with hospital stay and complications. She's still not right but she's the type to not admit to shit. She forgot who she was talking to one day and blamed the surgery on how she was feeling and I lost it. Honey, you feel like crap because you put off the surgery until your gallbladder damn near killed you. It could have been easy but you made it hard. So, please don't try selling your bullshit to me.

    Anyhow, in my mind, it's a day surgery for a little gadget with multiple exit strategies if it doesn't go well and sure as hell beats the alternative.
     
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