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Spinal Cord Stimulation

Ioannis M Skaribas, MD, DABA, FASA -  - Anesthesiology

Expert Pain

Ioannis M Skaribas, MD, DABA, FASA

Anesthesiology & Pain Management located in Memorial Area, Houston, TX

Spinal cord stimulation changes the way your brain receives messages from the nerves in your spine, helping to relieve the most treatment-resistant forms of pain. Double board-certified pain specialist Ioannis Skaribas, MD, DABA, FASA, of Expert Pain in Houston, Texas, is a world leader in using spinal cord stimulation to treat pain when nothing else is working. To benefit from his considerable expertise and experience, call Expert Pain today or book an appointment online.

Spinal Cord Stimulation Q & A

What is spinal cord stimulation?

Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) can help patients with severe chronic pain that isn't responding to other therapies. It uses the science of neurostimulation, changing how your brain perceives pain coming from the nerves in your spinal column.

Spinal cord stimulation is an effective solution to many kinds of back, neck, and limb pain, particularly radiculopathy (compression of the nerves in your spine).

Spinal cord stimulation devices are implantable, so you need to undergo a minimally invasive surgical procedure to place the spinal cord stimulator under your skin. Before committing to full implantation, your provider at Expert Pain arranges a trial for you so you can see how effective the treatment is in reducing your pain.

Are there different types of spinal cord stimulation?

A number of different spinal cord stimulation devices are available. Older models typically induce paresthesia, where your brain perceives pain signals as a tingling sensation. While most people don't mind this feeling, some dislike it.

Newer technologies use higher frequencies that don't trigger paresthesia, effectively switching off the pain signals altogether. Expert Pain specializes in spinal cord stimulation treatment, and uses the most advanced stimulators available, including the Abbott Proclaim™ XR SCS System with BurstDR™ and the Nevro® HFX™ HF10 System.

What does spinal cord stimulator implantation involve?

Trial implantation of a spinal cord stimulator involves undergoing a minor surgical procedure. After anesthetizing your skin, your provider at Expert Pain inserts one or two insulated wire leads, threading them through an epidural needle or making a small incision in the epidural space to access your spinal nerves.

To ensure they place the leads in the most effective position, your provider asks you to tell them when you feel the most noticeable reduction in pain. You wear an external unit for your trial period that you control with a remote device, turning the intensity up when you get a pain flare-up and down when it eases off.

If your spinal cord stimulation trial is a success, you can arrange to undergo the full implantation procedure. For this, you need another surgery to replace the temporary leads and implant the spinal cord stimulator generator, which goes under the skin of your buttocks or abdomen.

If your chronic pain isn't improving with current treatments, spinal cord stimulation could provide the relief you seek. Find out more by calling Expert Pain today, or book an appointment online.