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Phenix City, AL
A 52-year-old female asked:

I have lumbar spinal stenosis and have had four back surgeries. i also have nerve damage in my legs and feet.i feel extreme burning and tingling. now they want to puta spinal cord stimulator (scs) in. is it a good idea?

4 doctor answers8 doctors weighed in
Dr. William Gaya
Neurology 29 years experience
Neuromuscular: Spinal cord stimulator is used for severe lumbar and radicular pain when all other alternatives have failed. Failed back syndrome after multiple surgeries and failure to respond to standard therapy like antidepressants, antiepileptics, analgesics, muscle relaxer, anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy, tens acupuncture, and epidural block are the best indications for a scs.
Dr. Mark Weston
Orthopedic Spine Surgery 31 years experience
Good idea: Do the trial then implant i if it works, has out performed revision surgery in studies no reason to think a fifth surgery would be helpful burning pain could be permanent nerve damage with no structural solution blocking the transmission of afferent impulses makes sense to me.
Dr. Jonathan Hyde
Orthopedic Spine Surgery 29 years experience
A stimulator is a great option, if you pass a baseline psychologic evaluation and a percutaneous trial of the stimulator. Also, your doctor should make sure that your surgeries have healed correctly before you proceed with the trial.
May 4, 2013
Dr. Kevin Vaught
Neurosurgery 28 years experience
Reasonable: This is a reasonable option if you respond well with a scs trial. Good luck.
Dr. Marshall Bedder
Pain Management 38 years experience
Medically Sound: One cannot generalize for every patient and their own particular situation. In general, if a patient has been adequately decompressed, as you have been with 4 surgeries, and still has residual or continuing neuropathic pain they would be considered an excellent candidate for SCS at first assessment. Further spinal surgeries have not been seen to help and may in fact worsen your situation.

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Last updated Feb 3, 2018

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