Cervical Spinal Cord Stimulator
We provide you access to a state of the art facility for cervical spine treatments in NJ in the care of certified, experienced, and cost-efficient spine surgeons in NJ. We are pioneers of Cervical Spinal cord surgery in NJ; we have successfully implanted Cervical Spinal Cord Simulators (SCS) in patients to relieve them of chronic pain to increase their quality of life. Our panel of expert spine surgeons is ever present to assist you in enhancing YOUR quality of life.
About the Cervical Spinal Cord Stimulator
The Cervical Spinal Cord Stimulator (SCS) is an electronic device which is used to provide pain relief from chronic pain in back, arms, and legs. This simulator is inspired by the spinal cord stimulation therapy which argues for masking the pain instead of curing it. Similar to a pacemaker, the SCS is surgically placed in the region suffering from chronic pain. Once inserted, the device emits mild electronic pulses which mask or modify the pain signals from the nerve endings in the pain region. The device stimulates the nerve endings in duress to disguise the pain signals being transmitted to the brain, which reduces the pain being experienced by an individual. The SCS is a safer alternative to opioids medication for pain management.
Who needs the surgery
Generally, any individual who is suffering from chronic and excruciating pain because of:
1. Surgery: Often, spinal surgeries for a myriad of spinal conditions such as spinal fusion or spinal stenosis often fail or are successful but leave the patients with chronic, debilitating pain. Also known as failed back surgery syndrome.
2. Injury: Prolonged pain in the back, arm or legs caused by injury to the vertebral column through sporting accidents, auto accidents, gunshot wounds or falls.
3. Medical Condition: Individuals who are suffering from chronic pain because of medical conditions such as Neck Pain, Arthritis, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, Degenerative Disc Disease, Nerve Damage, Arachnoiditis, Multiple Sclerosis, Cervical Disc Damage, Stump Pain, Pinched Nerve, and Peripheral Vascular Disease, etc. are ideal candidates for a Cervical Spinal Cord Simulator surgery.
However, candidacy for a Cervical Spinal Cord Simulator is determined through a careful and thorough evaluation of the physical condition, medical and pain history, and pain medication regime of the patient. An expert panel of board certified fellowship trained physicians, neurosurgeons, and a psychiatrists will evaluate these factors to determine the suitability of a client for SCS.
In general, individuals who have been suffering from chronic and excruciating pain for more than 3-months in the lower back, arm or legs regions are considered suitable for this surgery.
Other conditions of suitability for SCS may include:
• The patient has carefully considered all treatment options for chronic pain
• Mainstream pain management regimes and therapies have failed to manage pain
• The patient does not want to take the risk of another spinal surgery for the threat of long recovery time, and other life-threatening factors.
• Physicians do not recommend another surgery as it will not be beneficial.
• The pain stems from a correctable problem which may be fixed by the SCS
• The patient does not have any condition which will prevent them from having an implant in their spinal cord
• The patient has successfully completed the trial period for the SCS
• The patient should not have a history of depression or drug addiction. These ailments should be treated before opting for SCS.
How it is performed
The Cervical Spinal Cord Simulator is placed in the spinal cord through a minimally invasive spine surgery by board certified spinal surgeons, spine specialists, and neurosurgeons. The following steps make it easier to understand the procedure:
1. Pre-Surgery: CSC Trial
Before a permanent SCS is inserted in the body through an invasive procedure, the panel of surgeons conducts a ‘CSC Trial’ which evaluates the physical suitability of the device for the patient’s pain considering the region and type of pain.
An anesthesiologist numbs the area of the incision, the neurosurgeon inserts a small hollow needle in the epidural space to situate the trial lead which is attached to an external device worn on a belt.
The patient is sent home with instructions to monitor the pain level and manage the device. The patient is advised to monitor this activity for 4-7 days after which the panel may take two decisions: (i) remove the trial lead as they are not providing pain relief, and (ii) prepare for a permanent surgical implant because the SCS considerable reduced the chronic pain.
The individual is given generalized, light anesthesia and the areas of the patient’s back and buttocks are prepared for surgery. The surgeons will make two small incisions: one in the back for the leads and one in the buttocks for the device.
The surgeons will remove a small portion of the arch of a vertebra to make room for the leads, the leads will be placed in the epidural space, they will not touch the spinal cord directly.
Once the leads are placed safely and securely in the epidural space, the surgeons will connect them to the generator implanted in the buttocks. The surgeons will secure the leads and the generator with sutures to ensure minimal discomfort and dislocation.
Once the device is secured, the surgeons close the incision and apply the dressing.
The patient will be monitored closely in the recovery room for 24-48 hours and then will be discharged with after-care instructions.