Around eight million people live with chronic pain, most frequently back pain, and now a new type of pain relief implant– Spinal Cord Stimulator procedure (SCS) – offered at Spire Leeds Hospital can help beat it, and patients are already feeling the benefits.
After eight years of chronic back and leg pain (sciatica) Lisa Lindsay was desperate. The 38-year-old regional HR manager from Brotherton, Yorkshire, had tried everything from surgery to spinal cord injections to strong painkillers and even turned to faith healing, anything to provide relief from the debilitating pain suffered since a fall resulted in two prolapsed discs in her spine. Yet nothing provided a long-term solution.
The constant pain crippled her activities both at work and at home. Lisa, who has a 12 year old son, Jake, doubted she would ever lead a normal life again. “I had to change jobs twice to reduce the amount of travel I was doing as driving for more than 45 minutes was impossible,” said Lisa. “I was not being able to participate in activities with my son, and even struggled with day-to-day activities that most people take for granted. These problems combined with sleep deprivation eventually led to me suffering from depression.”
Today she is one of a growing number of patients benefiting from treatment under the care of Dr Ganesan Baranidharan, a consultant in anesthesia and pain management at Spire Leeds Hospital, the only private hospital in Leeds currently offering this treatment.
Lisa received a Spinal Cord Stimulator implant, a two-hour procedure, usually performed as a day case. She is now able to lead a normal life, unlike many sufferers who are forced to rely on a cocktail of strong painkillers prescribed by their GPs. She is able to control pain at the touch of a remote control button.
“Low back pain with sciatica is a common condition and it’s disabling both physically and mentally,” said Dr Baranidharan. “This implanted device is like a pacemaker for the spinal cord. It delivers a pleasant tingling sensation in the specific area, helping to ease the pain. It represents a breakthrough in pain management and is recognised for neuropathic pain by the national institute for clinical excellence (NICE).”
Lisa added, “After suffering years of debilitating pain I feel that I’ve got my life back. I can go swimming, enjoy cycling and trampolining with my son and be pain-free. I just wish I’d known about it earlier. I’ve missed out on so much over the years. Now, I feel like I can do anything.”
About Spinal Cord Stimulator Procedure
Spinal Cord Stimulator is an implant system that delivers mild electrical impulses to nerves in the spine to help control or relieve chronic pain. It exerts pulsed electrical signals to the spinal cord or area of pain. Pain signals are inhibited before they reach the brain and replaced with a tingling sensation that covers the specific area of the pain. It can be used to treat a variety of conditions that have a nerve pain component.