Posted 2/22/2011 10:20 AM (GMT -6)
Sorry it took me so long to reply, but I know the first time I asked questions about a stim unit I was told to search the CP forum for older topics on the matter. Infact if you were to search back about a week you'd find an article written by me about how my trial period was going with my Stim unit.
Yes, a couple weeks back I was in the middle of an SCS unit trial period. I'd already done the required psyche exam. Personally can not fathom why it matters if you're mentally stable enough ... most of us have elevated levels BECAUSE of our pain /and/ our meds! that and the fact that most shrinks down-play your pain or treat you like you make a big deal out of it because they just don't understand to the point where I wanted to punch the one who did my write up.
Anyway, for me the SCS Unit was my only option other then narcotis, and it's been proven that drugs alone barely manage the pain and don't stop the progression of the "disease" I have.
My big question is where abouts (just state) do you live, and where is your pain located? Upper back, lower back? You mentioned walking without pain....
The reason I ask, is like all surgeries, the SCS surgery has it's risks as well. I guess because I need to have my leads all the way up to nearly the base of my skull (leads originally fed all the way up to C2 during my trial) it adds to the risk factor, and where I live recently there have been to many .... complications to the point alot of surgeons in my area are not even doing the implant surgery anymore. Which leaves me in a rock and a hard place.
The Stim unit doesn't work for everyone, but for me ... it did. Oh the relieve, the sweet glorious relief from my pain!! It wasn't totally gone, but I tell you I noticed it a heck of a lot less! Where normally I'm at a 9, I was down to a 4. Yes, all the padding and tape to protect your surgical site and the exposed wires is annoying, as is a few other things like not showering, having to wear the unit in a pouch at your waist... but I tell you the break from the pain made every little annoyance worth it!
Did you get sent home with a DVD about the SCS unit? Your PM Doc should have sent you home with one once he/she decided that the stim was your best option. Do you know which company your doctor uses? There's two big companies from my understanding: Medtronics, and Bostom Scientific's Percision Plus. If you got the info packet there should be an 800 number you can call -- do so. Feel free to ask questions of them. You can also ask me whatever you want to know and I'll do my best. I had the fortune of having a neighbor across the road have an implant so I was able to talk to her extensively about her implant. For her she was in a horrid car accident that dramatically damanged her lower back. She lost so much of her life.... now she has most of it back. Now she's able to go for walks again with her husband, she's able to ride her motorcycle again, do house work, even sit and relax to watch TV.
Remember knowledge is power, and one can never have to much knowledge.