Nerve Stimulator Shows Promising Results in Reducing Chronic Pain

Nerve stimulator

Millions of people around the country suffer from chronic pain. Whether it’s chronic pain in the low back, shoulder, head, or elsewhere, finding relief is of the utmost importance. The good news is that new and improved treatment options become available regularly. New details on such treatment options as nerve stimulators continue to be made available. 

Take, for example, the new Sprint Peripheral Nerve Stimulator, which is now being offered as a treatment option to help bring long-term relief to those who suffer from a variety of types of chronic pain. The nerve stimulator offers the benefits of the nerve stimulation that some people are familiar with, but it delivers it with just a short treatment. The stimulator is implanted near where the pain nerve is located through a minimally invasive procedure. Then the patient is able to control the amount of stimulation that is being delivered through a small hand-held remote.

With the stimulator left in for only 60 days, the patient can deliver the nerve stimulation whenever they feel they need it. They can also use the remote to increase or decrease the amount of stimulation that is being delivered. 

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A study published in the journal Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, shared the findings of using the 60-day nerve stimulator [1]. The study included 28 people who were lower extremity amputees who suffered from phantom limb pain. Some in the group were given the nerve stimulator treatment over the course of eight weeks, while others were given a placebo. 

What they found was that those in the nerve stimulator group had at least a 50% reduction in average weekly pain at 12 months following the study. Plus, those in the nerve stimulation group reported at least a 50% reduction in pain interference at the 12-month mark. They also found a significant reduction in the amount of depression in the nerve stimulator group, compared to those in the placebo group.

An additional study published in the journal Pain Practice shares the results of the nerve stimulator used in a study for chronic low back pain (2). Participants of the study had the device connected for a 1-month treatment period and then were assessed one year after its removal. They report that there was a substantial reduction in pain intensity, which was experienced by nearly 70% of the participants. At the one-year follow-up, they report that the people had experienced significant reductions in pain and/or disability, and there were no adverse reactions experienced. 

The nerve stimulator device works by providing stimulation to targeted peripheral nerve fibers. Many people who have tried the stimulator suffered from a variety of types of chronic pain, including low back, shoulder, knee, foot, and ankle, and post-amputation pain, among others. While some of them had tried other routes to finding relief, they were not successful in the long run. Using the nerve stimulator for 60 days may provide some people with long-term relief.

Those who are interested in trying the Sprint Peripheral Nerve Stimulator should discuss the treatment option with their pain doctor, or locate one that performs the implant of the device. We don’t yet have years of experience with this device, but the risks are low. The implant is only there for two months, and it may provide a drug-free route for some people to find chronic pain relief long-term. 

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Source:

  1. Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine. Percutaneous 60-day peripheral nerve stimulation implant provides sustained relief of chronic pain following amputation. November 2019.
  2. Pain Practice. Percutaneous Peripheral Nerve Stimulation for Chronic Low Back Pain: Prospective Case Series With 1 Year of Sustained Relief Following Short-Term Implant. March 2020.

This article was originally published on Confronting Chronic Pain by Dr. Steven Richeimer, Director Pain Medicine Master and Certificate.

Posted: February 14, 2022
<a href="https://ostrowon.usc.edu/author/richeimer/" target="_self">Dr. Steven H. Richeimer</a>

Dr. Steven H. Richeimer

Steven Richeimer, M.D. is a renowned specialist on issues related to chronic pain. He is the chief of the Division of Pain Medicine at the University of Southern California. He has written or co-written a large number of scientific articles about pain medicine. He recently published an instructive book and guide for pain patients. Dr. Richeimer has given numerous lectures to medical and lay audiences throughout the U.S.

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