I'm 31 (almost 32 y/o)B& have had 10 shoulder surgeries (6 on the left, 4 on the right) most of them have been major surgeries including bone grafts on each shoulder & a partial replacement on my left. The bottom & back part of my shoulder sockets didn't form correctly so both shoulders would constantly slip in and out of the joint. Although my shoulders are pretty stable now I have been dealing with severe chronic pain in both shoulders. My pain mngmnt doctor tried a series of stellate ganglion blocks & although they did help they did not provide the cumulative effect that we had hoped for. So his next recommendation is to try a spinal cord stimulation implant. I believe he's planning on using Boston Scientifics Smooth Wave implant & will involve a 7-10 day trial before doing the permenant implant. My question is I know these implants are often used for back pain but has anyone had this implant done for shoulder pain and if so would you recommend it? Also, I would greatly appreciate any advice, information, what to expect or personal experiences with the stimulation implant just in general.
Thank you so much in advance for any help anyone can provide!View Thread
Surgery went fine, no major complications so far. They inserted the leads into my upper back into my cervical spine. It's extremely sore which is to be expected & I have pain meds to help. But they did insert 2 leads to try to control the pain in both shoulders, not just my left shoulder which is good.
Unfortunately the main lead for my left & most painful shoulder moved while I was in recovery as they tried to sit me up. & since it moved the signal isn't nearly as strong as when they tested it in the OR. But as long as it doesn't move anymore I'm still getting some signal there as well as enough signal in my right shoulder to be able to decide if this is going to help enough to make it worthwhile to do the permanent implant procedure.View Thread
I did have the psychological evaluation she explained more of what the procedure entailed but they didn't really inform me of all the limitations that come with it other than MRIs are out. What other limitations are there that I should know about?
I'm scheduled for the trial implant on Oct 11th. Although i believe i'm making the right decision i'm really nervous about it since he will be messing around near my spinal cord along with reading about the possible complications (knicking the spinal cord causing CSF to leak, possible pneumothorax since they'll be implanting it higher up b/c it's for my shoulders, possible bleeding in or near the spinal cord causing temporary to permanent paralysis, etc.). If it were a shoulder surgery it wouldnt be so bad since I've had 10 of those but this is a totally new procedure for me.
Did you run into any complications during the trial & permanent implant procedures?
I've also read in one of the discussions & talked w/ a friend of a friend & they both said it took about 5-6 months to fully appreciate the implant. The mutual friend I talked to said that at about the 3 month mark she was so fed up with it she wanted it out. Her implant was through Medtronics though & it was implanted 3 yrs ago. I'm really hoping the Boston Scientific implant as well as possible advances in the past 3 yrs will make the adjustment smoother. How long did it take you to adjust to the implant? Did you ever "hit that wall"?
She also mentioned that the trial was completely different than the permanent implant. She said she was miserable during the trial due to the leads being external. Did you have any issues w/ the trial?
Also, how did it effect your taste buds? Did food taste different? What kind of vision changes did you have...blurred vision? How long did it take to even out? Did the doctors give you any reason or indication as to why they were being so mean just because you had the implant?
Sorry for so many questions. I just want to be as prepared as possible as to what I should expect.
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