01-26-2013 10:47 PM
I was wondering if anyone here has any experience with this device. My podiatrist sent me to a pain clinic who did a bunch of blood tests, mostly to find out if I was on drugs, which really angered me when I got the bill from him as I did not know what the blood draws were for specifically. It cost an awful lot when I could have told him I was not on drugs for free! The doc at the pain clinic spent maybe 3 minutes with me, glanced at my feet, barely touched them and then said he wanted to put a neurostimulator made by Medtronics in my back. I was resistant for a few reasons. I don't think the exam was anywhere near thorough and I suspect he is getting some sort of kickback from Medtronic. They gave me a video to watch which showed some folks who got some great results with this thing. But all of them had back pain. They even have "ambassadors" who will call you and tell you about their experience. Once again, the woman I talked to had back pain. Another reason I didn't feel comfortable with it is because insulated medical wires are placed in the epidural space of your spine to deliver electrical impulses from the neurostimulator to the nerves along the spinal cord. Basically it interupts the pain signal sending, instead, electrical impulses to your brain so you don't know you have pain. Usually you feel a tingling sensation (I already have that and don't much like it). They'll tell you that in addition to surgical risks, device problems can occur and may require corrective surgery. I just don't want to have any sort of surgery at all unless it's required to save my life. The last time I had surgery my blood pressure dropped extremely low and most of my recovery time was spent with some technician (I guess) who sat there next to me, I assume the entire time they were trying to bring it back up again because every time I woke up he was there watching me and a monitor. I've seen mention of Medtronic pumps in this community but not these. I would just like to know if anyone has one of these used for something other than back pain.
Thanks ~ Annie
01-27-2013 12:45 AM
Given your concerns, which seem reasonable to me, I would get a second opinion from another doctor.
01-27-2013 06:22 AM
Annie, I do not have this device but am interested in devices in general, so did some looking and found THIS. It's an article summarizing a 5 year old study of this device on leg pain. So they have used this before. But the key part is below - 48% of patients reported 50 percent or great improvement of pain. Good luck and I hope you find some relief in whatever treatment you choose.
The study, known as PROCESS (for PROspective randomized Controlled trial of the Effectiveness of Spinal cord Stimulation), showed that Medtronic neurostimulation therapy plus conventional medical management provided patients with significantly greater pain relief, quality of life, functional capacity and treatment satisfaction than conventional medical management alone after six months. Importantly, 48 percent of the patients assigned to receive neurostimulation plus conventional treatments experienced a 50 percent or greater improvement in leg pain compared to 9 percent of patients assigned to receive only conventional treatments (p<0.001).
01-27-2013 11:42 AM
01-28-2013 12:20 AM
Thank you all for your comments. After I get insurance again I'm going to go back to my podiatrist and ask for a referal to a different pain clinic because I'm just not happy with the one I went to. This ddevice IS Medtronics, that's who produced the DVD I watched. I haven't read the article from the link you posted efpat, but I will when I have more time, it's late here. I have a tendency to mistrust doctors since my husband died at the hands of incompetent ones who misdiagnosed him. I don't think any of them believe in the Hippocratic oath anymore; they all believe in filling up their bank accounts, but that's another story. But that's why I think he is getting kickbacks; I know it happens. And he was just too quick to want to put one of these things in me. It's probably what he automatically does for every pain patient since he does not prescribe any pain relievers at all.
I am happy to see that these devices are used successfully for more than just back pain. Thank you for sharing that information.
Spookiesmom, this video demonstrated the leads being inserted into the epidural space of the spine. There was nothing to indicate that they would put them anywhere else. They allow you to test the device for a week before it's permanently inserted under the skin. The leads are inserted and connected to the device that you wear around your waist. If you get relief and want to continue, then they'll slip it under the skin. I don't have any idea how it keeps going. It might be similar to a pace maker.
I will look into a TENS unit; I'm somewhat familiar with them. Thanks for the suggestion. You all have been very helpful. Thanks again.
01-28-2013 08:19 AM
01-28-2013 04:28 PM
Sorry Spookiesmom, I misunderstood what you meant about the placement. My bad. I didn't know who the other company was that makes these. I wonder what the difference is between the two. I didn't mean to lecture you about how they work Spookiesmom, I was just saying, that's all. Sorry. I hope you get one soon. Best wishes.
01-28-2013 07:20 PM
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