Comprehensive Pain Management
(Formally known as Franklin Pain and Wellness and Warwick Pain)

Attleboro, MA(508) 236-8333
Franklin, MA(508) 507-8818
South Kingstown, RI (401) 234-9677
Warwick, RI(401) 352-0007

Franklin, MA • (508) 507-8818
Warwick, RI • (401) 352-0007
South Kingstown, RI • (401) 234-9677

South Kingstown Pain Center RI Blog

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Risk Factors for Chronic Pain

Joseph Coupal - Friday, May 25, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Franklin, MA

There are specific risk factors that predict who may be likely to need pain management in the future.

Chronic pain currently affects about 116 million American adults — that's more than diabetes, heart disease, and cancer combined. But because pain can stem from many different diseases, injuries, and situations, there are many risk factors to consider when predicting who might experience chronic pain and need pain management solutions.

There are three major categories of risk factors for chronic pain:

  • Biological risk factors that stem from your physical characteristics as well as your medical history
  • Psychological risk factors linked to your mood and personality
  • Lifestyle risk factors

Living With Chronic Pain: Biological Risk Factors

These are the leading physical factors that could put you at risk for chronic pain:

  • Old age. As people grow older and as their bodies age, they tend to need more ways to manage pain.
  • Genetics. Some chronic pain conditions like migraines have been linked to genetics. Studies also have found genetic conditions that can make you more sensitive to pain and require more chronic pain management.
  • Race. African-Americans and Hispanics appear to be at greater risk for chronic pain, studies have shown.
  • Obesity. People who carry a lot of extra weight often develop chronic pain due to their poor health. Obesity also can exacerbate medical conditions that require pain management.
  • Previous injury. People who have recovered from a traumatic injury run a greater risk for future chronic pain. The main pain neurotransmitter is released in greater quantities in people who had previous pain problems or previous longstanding psychiatric disorder. It's a startling increase — it can be anywhere from threefold to five fold.

Living With Chronic Pain: Psychological Risk Factors

These factors can also increase your risk of living with chronic pain:

  • Childhood trauma. People who experienced parental neglect or physical or sexual abuse as children are more likely to have chronic pain. These childhood factors play a large role in later developing a chronic pain problem.
  • Mood disorders. People with depression or anxiety disorders have a greater risk of chronic pain. Many brain areas and neurotransmitters that handle pain signals also manage mood.

Living With Chronic Pain: Lifestyle Risk Factors

The way you live your life can put you at risk for chronic pain:

  • Having a high-risk job. People with jobs that require heavy lifting or strenuous physical activity are at greater risk for developing chronic pain.
  • Stress. Chronic pain has been linked to both chronic stress and post-traumatic stress disorder.
  • Smoking. Smokers are at greater risk for developing medical conditions that lead to the need for chronic pain management. They also are less likely to respond to pain management therapies.

Living With Chronic Pain: Decreasing Your Risk

Becoming more aware of your risk factors can give you an edge in warding off future chronic pain. Preventive steps you can take include:

  • Improve your health. Eat right and exercise to reach a healthy weight and become physically fit.
  • Quit smoking. There are numerous health benefits to quitting, including the potential to avoid future chronic pain management.
  • Manage your stress. Exercise, meditate, or practice another form of stress relief. Seek help for mood disorders.If you have depression or anxiety, get help before your mood disorder leads to chronic pain.
  • Be smart on the job. Take safety precautions to limit your risk of injury. That's part of why work safety issues are really important — a lot of these jobs can be made a lot safer. In construction, people have to wear hard hats because they decrease the risk of head injuries. The same thing may be true for wearing some kind of brace or support when performing a heavy lifting job.

Here's the bottom line: Knowing more about why chronic pain occurs and how to keep it in check may help you avoid this condition. For more information, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI. everydayhealth.com

Treating Chronic Neck Pain

Joseph Coupal - Friday, May 11, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - South Kingstown, RI

Chronic neck pain is the third most commonly reported type of chronic pain in the U.S. and is one of the most common physical complaints around the world. The pain can be annoying or it can be debilitating—but when you’re experiencing it, chances are it’s pretty much all you can think about.

Causes of Chronic Neck Pain

Your neck can be injured easily because it’s so exposed. Because of this, there are many factors that could cause chronic neck pain. It could be the result of a sudden injury or trauma to the neck or spine, or it could be caused by a constant irritation to your neck, shoulders or upper back. It also could be triggered by certain types of illnesses. Some of the most common causes of chronic neck pain include:

  • Bad sleeping position
  • Bad posture when using a computer
  • Slouching when using a smartphone or tablet
  • Holding your phone between your shoulder and chin while talking
  • Stress
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Disk deterioration in the spine
  • Injury or trauma, like whiplash

Treatment for Your Chronic Neck Pain

Treatment for chronic neck pain varies depending on the cause. Some people can manage with some TLC and lifestyle changes, while others may need advanced treatment, such as surgery. Here are some treatment options that are used to treat chronic neck pain:

  • Rest your neck. Avoid activities that put strain on your neck, like some sports and physical activities.
  • Apply ice and/or heat. Ice reduces swelling, while heat helps relieve muscle stiffness. Ice is generally recommended within 24 hours of an injury occurring, but if your chronic neck pain is caused by inflammation in the discs, perhaps caused by arthritis, ice may be helpful when the pain starts to get worse. Some people use only ice, others only heat, while some alternate ice and heat, both for no longer than 20 minutes at a time.
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation unit, or TENS. A TENS unit is a non-invasive, non-medicinal treatment that uses mild electric currents to interrupt the pain messages sent to your brain.
  • Over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers: To reduce swelling (inflammation) and/or pain.
  • Immobilization: A brace to keep your head steady, keeping the pressure off your neck.
  • Physical therapy/exercises: Physical therapy may help you stretch your neck and build up strength in your neck and shoulders. A physical therapist can also assess your posture, to determine if this is causing your chronic neck pain, and give you exercises to help improve the way you sit and stand.
  • Relaxation exercises. If chronic stress is leading to pain in your neck, relaxation exercises, such as meditation, may help you manage your stress levels so your neck and upper back muscles don’t tighten up.
  • Steroid injections: If your chronic neck pain is caused by arthritis, your doctor may recommend you receive steroid injections into the joints in your neck, to relieve inflammation.
  • Surgery: A last resort, surgery procedure may be recommended if a disc in your neck is pinching a nerve or the discs are compressed together, causing the pain.

Preventing Chronic Neck Pain

It does seem more often that older folks get some sort of chronic neck pain, but it’s not inevitable. You may be able to reduce your risk of neck pain by taking some simple steps, such as:

  • Checking your posture, especially when working in front of a computer or using a smartphone or tablet.
  • Taking frequent breaks if you work at a computer, stretch, and move your neck around to loosen the muscles.
  • Exercising regularly.
  • Managing your stress levels.
  • Not carrying heavy purses or bags on one shoulder.
  • Investing in a good pillow that supports your head in a comfortable position.
  • Stopping smoking if you do. Smoking increases the risk of neck pain.

Chronic neck pain isn’t always avoidable, but your lifestyle and habits may contribute to pain if you’re not careful. Take care of your neck and if you do experience pain, speak with your doctor or physical therapist for advice on how to best manage it.

For more informaiton on treating chronic neck pain, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: healthgrades.com

Common Causes of Back Pain

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, April 26, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - South Kingstown, RI

Many people experience a wide range of back pain symptoms. Some common back pain culprits include:

Back strains and sprains. When you make a sudden movement or overdo it by trying to lift or move objects that are too heavy, a back strain or sprain can occur. This type of back injury typically causes pain that gets worse with movement.

Bulging or herniated disk. Your spine is made up of bones called vertebrae. In between the vertebrae are disks that cushion the spine and keep the vertebrae in place. These disks are filled with a jelly-like substance that can slip out of place, irritating nearby nerves and causing pain. Sometimes the pain shoots down the lower back through one side of the buttocks and legs. This is called sciatica.

Chronic conditions. Some kinds of back pain come on more slowly and build up over time. This is the case with back pain caused by degenerative types of arthritis, such as osteoarthritis. Arthritis is a common cause of back pain in people over the age of 65. Degenerative disk disease is often the cause of arthritis in the back. That’s because the disks that serve as cushions between the bones of the spine break down over time. Studies show that almost everyone over age 60 has some level of disk degeneration, though it’s not clear why only some people experience symptoms like pain and stiffness. Strain from abnormal spine curvatures, as with scoliosis, can also cause back pain.

Acute conditions. Some acute conditions can cause back pain symptoms, such as spine fractures or collapse secondary to osteoporosis.

Is Your Back Pain Chronic or Acute?

Back pain that comes on quick and strong is known as acute back pain. This is commonly caused by an injury or event that jars the structures of the back, such as overdoing it while participating in a sport or exercising. Acute back pain typically begins to improve after a few days.

Back pain that persists over longer periods of time is diagnosed as chronic back pain.

Regardless of the type of back pain you’re experiencing, be sure to talk to a doctor and pain specialist and work together to come up with the best treatment plan for back pain relief. For more information on back pain symptoms and relief, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: EveryDayHealth

Causes of Chronic Pain

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, April 12, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Franklin, MA

Some of the most common types of chronic pain include:

  1. headache
  2. postsurgical pain
  3. post-trauma pain
  4. lower back pain
  5. cancer pain
  6. arthritis pain
  7. pain caused by nerve damage
  8. pain that isn’t caused by disease, injury, or nerve damage

More than 1.5 billion people around the world have chronic pain. It’s the most common cause of long-term disability in the United States, affecting about 100 million Americans.

Causes

What causes chronic pain?

Chronic pain is usually caused by an initial injury, such as a back sprain or pulled muscle. It’s believed that chronic pain develops after nerves become damaged. The nerve damage makes pain more intense and long lasting. In these cases, treating the underlying injury may not resolve the chronic pain.

In some cases, however, people experience chronic pain without any prior injury. The exact causes of chronic pain without injury aren’t well understood. The pain may sometimes result from an underlying health condition.

Risk Factors

Who is at risk for chronic pain?

Chronic pain can affect people of all ages, but it’s most common in older adults. Besides age, other factors that can increase your risk of developing chronic pain include:

  1. having an injury
  2. having surgery
  3. being female
  4. being overweight or obese

Treatment

How is chronic pain treated?

The main goal of treatment is to reduce pain and boost mobility. This helps you return to your daily activities without discomfort.

The severity and frequency of chronic pain can differ among individuals. So doctors create pain management plans that are specific to each person. Your pain management plan will depend on your symptoms and any underlying health conditions. Medical treatments, lifestyle remedies, or a combination of these methods may be used to treat your chronic pain.

Medical procedures for chronic pain

Certain medical procedures can also provide relief from chronic pain. An example of a few are:

  • electrical stimulation, which reduces pain by sending mild electric shocks into your muscles
  • Steroid Injections
  • nerve block, which is an injection that prevents nerves from sending pain signals to your brain
  • acupuncture, which involves lightly pricking your skin with needles to alleviate pain
  • Lifestyle remedies for chronic pain

Coping

Dealing with chronic pain

There isn’t a cure for chronic pain, but the condition can be managed successfully. It’s important to stick to your pain management plan to help relieve symptoms.

Physical pain is related to emotional pain, so chronic pain can increase your stress levels. Building emotional skills can help you cope with any stress related to your condition. Here are some steps you can take to reduce stress:

Take good care of your body: Eating well, getting enough sleep, and exercising regularly can keep your body healthy and reduce feelings of stress.

Continue taking part in your daily activities: You can boost your mood and decrease stress by participating in activities you enjoy and socializing with friends. Chronic pain may make it challenging to perform certain tasks. But isolating yourself can give you a more negative outlook on your condition and increase your sensitivity to pain.

Seek support: Friends, family, and support groups can lend you a helping hand and offer comfort during difficult times. Whether you’re having trouble with daily tasks or you’re simply in need of an emotional boost, a close friend or loved one can provide the support you need.

For more information contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: healthline.com

What Is Spinal Stenosis?

Joseph Coupal - Friday, March 16, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI

What Is It?

It's when the spaces between the bones that make up your spinal cord get narrow. This can put pressure on those bones and on the nerves that run from your spine to your arms and legs. It happens most often in your lower back or neck.

The Symptoms

You may not notice any. But if the narrowing puts pressure on your spinal cord or nerve roots, you may have numbness, weakness, cramping, and pain in your arms and legs. In more severe cases, you may have trouble with your bowel, bladder, or having sex.

Who Gets It

It’s most common in men and women over 50 years old. But it can happen when you’re younger if you’re born with a condition that narrows your spinal canal, or you injured your spine in some way.

Your Aging Spine

The ligaments (cords that hold your spine together) may get thicker and harder as you age. Bones and joints also may get bigger, and that can narrow the spaces between your vertebrae. Arthritis, which is more common when you’re older, can make this worse.

Other Possible Causes

Several things can put pressure on your spinal cord and nerves. For example, if you have a herniated disk, the soft cushions or “disks” that separate your vertebrae can crack and ooze. Tumors also can grow in the spine, or a sudden injury can shift your spine or create bone fragments there.

Diagnosis

Your doctor will ask about your medical history because injuries and other health problems may cause the same symptoms. She’ll check for pain when you bend backward and test your muscle strength and reflexes. She also may want do imaging scans to look inside your spinal column and check for things like tumors, bone spurs, or an injury.

Nonsurgical Treatments

Your doctor might recommend that you not do some activities. He also might suggest certain exercises to strengthen your stomach and back muscles to help support your spine. Aerobic exercises -- swimming, biking, or brisk walking -- can be good ways to stay active. If you’re older or have weak stomach muscles, you might need a brace to strengthen your backbone.

For more information on comprehensive back pain, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: webmd.com

Balloon Kyphoplasty Curbs Opioid Use in Vertebral Compression Fractures

Darren Kincaid - Friday, February 23, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - South Kingstown, RI

Patients suffer vertebral compression fractures when their bones become too fragile. VCF complications may include impaired gait, disability, reduced lung function, early satiety, future fracture risk and mortality. The National Osteoporosis Foundation reports a vertebral fracture occurs every 22 seconds globally, and about two-thirds of VCFs are initially asymptomatic and under-diagnosed.

Older women, especially, are at great risk of developing VCFs. A 2015, 12-year study compared hospitalizations for osteoporotic fractures in women 55 years and older to hospitalizations for other conditions. The study discovered 4.9 million hospitalizations for osteoporotic fractures in women, more than the hospitalizations for myocardial infarction, stroke or breast cancer.

Patients with VCFs have a variety of treatment options, including non-surgical management, balloon kyphoplasty (BKP) and vertebroplasty. Non-surgical management often involves bracing patients and prescribing opiods for pain management.

Non-surgical management in the elderly population poses a particularly challenging healing environment, because if you give them enough time, they will form fibrosis in the fracture, but if their bone quality is that bad, they have no innate ability to heal themselves. And adding narcotics into the mix presents a "recipe for disaster" for the elderly, as the medication will make them "loopy" and at risk of losing their balance.

Drug reliance can be a problem

Opioids play a major role in non-surgical management of VCFs, so many providers seek alternative treatment methods to combat the opioid epidemic sweeping the nation.

There must alternative forms of therapy for patients. And it is imperative these alternative treatment options catch the condition early. The addictive potential of opioids poses a critical reason for the importance of early detection of VCFs.

There are many benefits to treating early. A quick procedure with low morbidity and low risk that yields a high benefit of getting people out of the hospital, mobilized and off their narcotics quicker is a necessity.

That's where procedure-based pain management techniques, such as balloon kyphoplasty, come in.

How balloon kyphoplasty stacks up against non-surgical management

Balloon kyphoplasty is an augmentation procedure designed to stabilize the spine.

Balloon kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure for the treatment of pathological fractures of the vertebral body due to osteoporosis, cancer or benign lesion. Cancer includes multiple myeloma and metastatic lesions, including those arising from breast or lung, or lymphoma. Benign lesions include hemangioma and giant cell tumor.

Surgeons mechanically treat a fracture by inserting and inflating a balloon to create an open cavity inside the bone for injecting bone cement. Surgeons insert a controlled amount of Kyphon bone cement into the cavity, which creates an internal cast to stabilize the fracture.

The reason doctors want to do more balloon kyphoplasty is because evidence shows patients have much better pain relief short- and long-term and rewduce the amount of opioid use. Pain is the number one reason people seek medical care, so we need a viable procedurebased option to treat pain.

Balloon Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure designed to repair spinal fractures. More than 15,000 physicians have undergone balloon kyphoplasty training worldwide and treated more than 1 million fractures with the procedure.

Pain relief has certainly been obsovered across numerous studies, finding statistically and clinically significant pain reductions from baseline observed early from week one that persisted through 12 months or 24 months.

For more information on Balloon Kyphoplasty, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: Becker Spine Review

Chronic Pain Management and the Workplace

Darren Kincaid - Thursday, February 15, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Franklin, MA

When talking about chronic pain and the workplace you can find yourself engulfed in numbers—how many people are hurt in the work place, how many receive workers compensation, and a list of some of the most dangerous jobs.

But there is nothing about people who struggle as they try to hold down a job while dealing with the pain from an injury or illness.

Here are some statistics, numbers that may surprise many of you.

  • Pain is the number one cause of adult disability in the U.S.
  • Pain costs $294 billion annually in lost workdays, medical expenses, and other benefit costs.
  • Lost productive time from common pain conditions among active U.S. workers cost an estimated $61.2 billion annually, largely due to reduced performance while at work.
  • Thirteen percent of the total workforce experienced a loss in productive time during a two-week period due to a common pain condition, including headache, back pain, arthritis, and musculoskeletal pain.

The real question is how do people with pain manage to keep their jobs when pain seems to be their constant companion? For them, the responsibility of holding down a full-time job and keeping up with all the basic activities of daily life can feel insurmountable and eliminate any chance of having time to enjoy life.

Work is a big challenge for people with chronic pain. Some keep working at all costs—even at the expense of their health and relationships. Trying to find a balance between a job and taking care of yourself can be challenging. But the financial and emotional impact of losing a job because of chronic pain can be devastating.

Many people with chronic pain have trouble staying employed. Managing pain is a full-time job. Physical abilities can change unpredictably. One day you might be able to turn a certain way, or move your arm without pain and the next day you just can’t.

How Attitude Influences Disability

The disabilities that come with chronic pain affect us in different ways.

  • Some people are learning to manage their pain and wish to return to work.
  • Others know that life is different when living with pain and need to find a different job that is compatible with their more limited abilities.
  • Still others feel their pain totally disables them and will not consider any job, unable to even work from home.

Attitude is key to believing that fulfilling employment can be part of a life that includes chronic pain.

The American College of Occupational & Environmental Medicine’s (ACOEM) developed guidelines to prevent needless work disability. The main message of these guidelines is that work avoidance and job loss following injury, illness, or aging is largely preventable and not medically required.

The guidelines point out that a team approach by employers, doctors, therapists, insurers, and others is required to promptly help people keep life as normal as possible and get “right back in the saddle” to safe and medically appropriate work. Otherwise prolonged tenure in a passive “patient” role increases the risk of developing an “I can’t” self-concept, along with needless long-term withdrawal from work, social life, and a productive contribution to society.

Long-term worklessness is one of the greatest risks to health in our society. It is more dangerous than the most dangerous jobs in the construction industry, or working on an oil rig in the North Sea, and too often we not only fail to protect our patients from long-term worklessness, we sometimes actually push them into it, inadvertently.

Work provides people with financial security, a structure to their days, and a chance for physical activity. It offers community, social interaction, and a sense of purpose, contributing to one’s self-esteem.

Those without work in their lives are more likely to be sick, engage in risky behaviors such as excessive drinking, or fall into depression, and other emotional distress.

For more information on chronic pain management, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: Excerpts - theacpa.org

About Radiofrequency Ablation

Darren Kincaid - Thursday, February 08, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Franklin, MA

Radiofrequency ablation (or RFA) is a procedure used to reduce pain. An electrical current produced by a radio wave is used to heat up a small area of nerve tissue, thereby decreasing pain signals from that specific area.

Which Conditions Are Treated With Radiofrequency Ablation?

RFA can be used to help patients with chronic (long-lasting) low-back and neck pain and pain related to the degeneration of joints from arthritis.

How Long Does Pain Relief From Radiofrequency Ablation Last?

The degree of pain relief varies, depending on the cause and location of the pain. Pain relief from RFA can last from six to 12 months and in some cases, relief can last for years. More than 70% of patients treated with RFA experience pain relief.

Is Radiofrequency Ablation Safe?

RFA has proven to be a safe and effective way to treat some forms of pain. It also is generally well-tolerated, with very few associated complications. There is a slight risk of infection and bleeding at the insertion site. Your doctor can advise you about your particular risk.

What Are the Side Effects of Radiofrequency Ablation?

The main side effect of RFA is some discomfort, including swelling and bruising at the site of the treatment, but this generally goes away after a few days.

Who Should Not Get Radiofrequency Ablation?

As with any medical procedure, RFA is not appropriate for everyone. For example, radiofrequency ablation is not recommended for people who have active infections or bleeding problems. Your doctor can tell you if you should not have RFA.

What Side Effects May I Have After Radiofrequency Ablation?

You may experience the following effects after RFA:

Leg numbness: If you have any leg numbness, walk only with assistance. This should only last a few hours and is due to the local anesthesia given during the procedure.

Mild back discomfort: This may occur when the local anesthetic wears off and usually lasts two or three days. Apply ice to the area the day of the procedure and moist heat the day after the procedure if the discomfort persists. You may also use your usual pain medications.

For more information on Radiofrequency Ablation contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: webmd.com

A Minimally Invasive Treatment Option for Back Pain

Joseph Coupal - Friday, January 26, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Disc-FX System

Treating Contained Disc Herniations

In the past, patients with contained disc herniations have been treated with conservative care including rest, medications, injections and/or physical therapy. Unfortunately, this does not always provide relief. In the past, people who did not respond to conservative care were forced to live with the symptoms or consider major spine surgery. If they underwent surgery, it could take weeks or months to recover, causing a major disruption in their daily lives.

With Disc-FX, this is not the case. Disc-FX provides an option for those people who have failed conservative care, and are not yet ready for major surgery. It is a minimal access procedure performed on an out-patient basis. The patient will go home the same day as the procedure with only a small bandage on their back. Following manual removal of the offending herniation, the patented Disc-FX device is activated to help clean the disc and seal tears in the annulus. As a result, pressure in the disc is reduced, which eases symptoms.

Facts about Contained Disc Herniations:

  • 90% of low back pain is caused by pinched or irritated nerve in the back
  • There are 15 million office visits for low back pain each year
  • Low back pain is the most prevalent cause for people under 45 to visit their physician

Who is a Candidate for the Procedure?

Patients with symptomatic, contained lumbar disc herniations that have not responded to conservative treatment, may experience relief from the use of Disc-FX. Typical signs of a contained lumbar disc herniation is lower back pain or pain radiating down the leg accompanied by some lower back pain. Disc-FX® may not be beneficial for advanced degenerative disc disease or spinal fractures. At Comprehensive Pain Management, we will evaluate and determine if you are a candidate for Disc-FX.

Disc-FX System Overview

The Disc-FX System is an innovative, minimal access spine system designed to efficiently access the damaged disc without injury to surrounding disc anatomy. Disc-FX permits multiple treatment options compared to other ‘single treatment’ devices in the marketplace. In addition to manual decompression, Disc-FX can help to clean the disc and seal tears in the annulus.

For more information on Disc FX contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Spinal Cord Stimulation FAQs

Joseph Coupal - Friday, January 05, 2018

Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingston, RI When can I resume my usual activity?

For several weeks after the procedure you will be asked to restrict your physical activity. Once that period is over, your Spinal Cord Stimulation system is designed to help you lead a healthy and active lifestyle. However, you should always consult your doctor before resuming activity after surgery or before engaging in physical activities.

Will I be totally pain-free with Spinal Cord Stimulation?

People differ in the amount of pain relief they receive with SCS therapy. Many people experience a reduction in pain sensations. The trial procedure will help you determine the amount of relief you may receive.

Will Spinal Cord Stimulation allow me to be free of pain medications?

For some patients, SCS works well enough that pain medications are no longer needed. For others, it can mean a reduction in the amount of pain medication they need. Always consult your doctor before changing your dosage of any medications.

Can I control the stimulation therapy?

Yes, the cordless remote control allows you to turn stimulation on and off, increase and decrease the level of stimulation, and target different pain areas using settings or programs designed specifically for you.

Do I use my Spinal Cord Stimulation system 24 hours a day?

It’s up to you. These systems are designed for 24-hour-a-day use, should you wish. However, there are a few limitations, which your physician can describe. For instance, you should not turn on stimulation while driving or charge while sleeping.

Can one Spinal Cord Stimulation system help me with pain in multiple areas?

Yes, this system is designed to address multiple pain areas at the same time. You can use your remote control to adjust the amount of stimulation for each pain area.

Can I get diagnostic imaging with this system?

SCS patients have many imaging options. Commonly used methods such as X-Rays, CT Scans, PET Scans and Ultrasounds can image many different parts of the body, including soft tissue. In addition, the Precision Montage™ MRI System provides access to full-body MRI scans, under specified conditions, for patients who meet the eligibility requirements. SCS systems have varying limitations and conditions related to MRI scans. Talk to your doctor to find out which option is right for you.

Will I feel the implant? Is it visible to others?

The implant features a contoured oval shape and is small in size. Your doctor can position it in the most comfortable and convenient location in your body. Patients often report that they can feel the unit by pressing on their skin. In most cases, it isn’t visible to others.

How convenient is it to recharge the implant battery?

Recharging the implant battery is designed to be convenient and simple. The charger is lightweight, cordless and portable so you can charge on the go. Either an adhesive patch or soft cloth belt (included with the charger) can be used to recharge.

Is spinal cord stimulation safe?

Yes, spinal cord stimulation has been proven safe and effective and has been in use for decades. Over 400,000 people worldwide have been successfully treated with SCS therapy. You should review the risks of SCS with your physician.

For more information on Spinal Cord Stimulation contact Comprehensive Pain Management in South Kingstown, RI.

Source: bostonscientific.com