Spinal Cord Stimulation is a treatment option for chronic (more than 6 months) neuropathic pain. It is not a treatment option for joint or muscle pain (Nociceptive pain).
Neuropathic pain is pain arising from a disturbance of the neural tissue and includes a range of conditions. People with neuropathic pain often describe unusual sensations such as shooting, burning and electrical. Here are few examples of neuropathic pain conditions that can be helped by SCS:
- Neuropathic pain following surgery, trauma, infection or diabetes.
- Continued leg/back pain following spinal surgery.
- Complex regional pain syndrome
The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) published a technology appraisal for SCS and made the following recommendation. 'Spinal cord stimulation is recommended as a possible treatment for adults with chronic pain of neuropathic origin if they: continue to experience chronic pain (measuring at least 50 mm on a 0–100 mm visual analogue scale) for at least 6 months despite standard treatments.' See link below.
If you are under the care of a pain management team elsewhere you should ask if they have considered SCS and refer to their local SCS centre. If you prefer, then you can ask to be referred to us, here at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals.
If you think that you fit these criteria but have not been to a pain centre you can either be assessed by one locally or if would like to be assessed at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals by the Pain Management team for SCS, your GP will need to refer you. Your GP can use the 'choose and book' system to book you into the 'Neuromodulation Clinic'.
The Pain Management Service at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals has eighteen years' experience in SCS and has contributed to the collective clinical science supporting the appropriate use of spinal cord stimulation within the national health service.