How Spinal Cord Stimulators Provide Ongoing, Drug-Free Relief from Chronic Back Pain

Chances are, you or someone you care about lives with chronic back pain. The leading cause of disability and one of the top reasons for missed work, low back pain affects 31 million adults in the United States at any given time. For many people, back pain lingers, interfering more and more with daily life.

At Spinal Diagnostics, we’re pleased to provide a range of options for anyone with spine-related issues that cause back pain, including spinal cord stimulation. Our specialists implant these devices under your skin using local anesthetic in a 60-minute, minimally invasive procedure. To learn more, contact one of our three convenient locations in and around Portland, Oregon.

How spinal cord stimulators work

Spinal cord stimulators use mild electrical impulses to alter the activity of nerves throughout your spine. This process blocks or masks the pain signals sending “I’m in pain”-like messages to your brain. As a result, you no longer experience the same level of pain or need the same amount of pain medication to alleviate it. This is true, even when the source of your pain persists. 

Once implanted, spinal cord stimulators can help manage a variety of conditions known to cause and worsen back pain, including:

  • Bone spurs
  • Cervical and lumbar radiculitis
  • Complex regional pain syndrome
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Failed back surgery
  • Herniated discs
  • Neuropathy
  • Osteoarthritis

How long do spinal cord stimulators work?

Spinal cord stimulation can provide long-term relief from chronic back pain. The longevity of a device varies from person to person, based on factors such as how much stimulation is needed. In general, the stimulators last 5-20 years, at which point you can opt for a follow-up procedure to have the old battery swapped out for a new one. Devices with rechargeable batteries tend to last the longest. Other than the need for new or recharged batteries, spinal cord stimulators provide permanent back pain relief.

How effective are spinal cord stimulators?

Recipients report a 50%-70% reduction in pain after implantation of a spinal cord stimulator. The device may make the need for additional treatments, such as medication, obsolete. Or you might find that you only need smaller amounts of medication, thanks to the device. Or you may discover that over-the-counter medication is sufficient, as opposed to stronger prescription back pain medication that can bring about bothersome side effects.

Learn much more by scheduling a consultation at Spinal Diagnostics. Our team welcomes the chance to help you find your way to less chronic back pain. Call the office nearest you or request your appointment using our online scheduler

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