SCS & Pain Pumps For spinal cord stimulator (SCS) and pain pump discussions.

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Old 07-06-2010, 06:45 PM #1
msdilbert2 msdilbert2 is offline
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Default SCS vs. pain pump

Please excuse my lack of knowledge, but how did all of with pumps decide which type of pump to use? stimulator or med pump? Can you get trials with both before you and your md. make a final decision? thanks, Pam
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Old 07-06-2010, 08:59 PM #2
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Hello! And Welcome!!!

For me, I am only 20 and so my dr wont give me a pain pump because of my age and if and when I want to start a family he wanted to assure I can be pregnant. SCS and pain pump are totally different, It just depends what works per person. Yes you do get trials of them before. Usually a week long. I knew immediately that it helped. Most people notice immediately with the trial if they get relief, but you get it for a week to see if you like it! If you read back on posts to lostmary she has a pain pump and has had ALOT of relief!!!
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Old 07-07-2010, 06:52 AM #3
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hi ~ i had the SCS implanted for 6 months, but it had to be removed because i didn't have enough fat content in my body to hold it in. in other words, the generator tried to work itself out. ick. so then they did the trial for the morphine pump, which made no sense cause it's 3 times the size of the SCS. go figure. anyway, it worked wonderfully, and all my pain was relieved. i was delighted, but then they told me i couldn't have it. lol


so if i were you, i'd go for the pump, as the SCS just irritated things more for me. it made my sciatic nerve hurt even more. just my 2 cents.

best of luck. hugs, lee
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recovering alcoholic, sober since 7-29-93;severe depression; 2 open spinal surgeries; severe sciatica since 1986; epidurals; trigger points; myelograms; Rhizotomy; Racz procedure; spinal cord stimulator implant (and later removal); morphine pump trial (didn't work);now inoperable; lumpectomy; radiation; breast cancer survivor; heart attack; fibromyalgia; on disability.



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Old 07-07-2010, 10:29 AM #4
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I looked into both the pain pump and the SCS when I was trying to decide what to do. When I went to see the dr. who does pain pumps in my area (he's considered the best dr. who does it in my area), he said to go with SCS as there's less chance of infection, and also ins. companies have been fighting him on reimbursement for the pain meds. lately. So, since I value his opinion, I went and did the trials for the SCS (both lumbar and cervical) with my pain mgmt. dr.. The trials went good and I'm getting the permanent implants Aug. 19.

I've heard that some folks' meds. for pain pumps can run $5-10K every refill and that's why ins. companies prefer the one time cost of a SCS implant. Others, however have gone with the pain pump and have said they don't have any problems with their ins. companies paying for their refills.

I'd recommend you talk to both doctors (the one who'd do the pain pump and the one who'd do the SCS) and see what you feel more comfortable with. For me, the ins. issue was a biggie, as my ins. co. already pays out $6K a month for another medicine I have to take.

Good luck in your decision. Let us know what you decide.
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Old 07-08-2010, 11:32 AM #5
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Confused Anyone tried Cervical Pump?

Hi! I am 30 and have been in pain for 11 years now. Long story short, I have tried a regular pump implant which didn't help enough to continue but it is still in my body because it is such a big surgery to pull out.
As of now, one Doc wants to do a Spinal cord stim in my neck but I have had mutliple brain/neck surgeries and I and even the Doc doesn't think it has a a great shot of getting into the epidural space and working! He still wants to do it before I try a cervical pump. Insurance of course will not cover any of this! Then, I have two other Docs who say to skip SCS and do cervical pump. One wants to do a trial and one wants to go ahead and implant it. Neither has done more than four because it just isn't done anymore. That's how scary it is!
Has anyone had this? Advice? Know of any Doctors who have done more than four in US? Need help
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Old 07-08-2010, 12:08 PM #6
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The type of pump you use depends on what company your Doctor uses. If your Doctor works with Medtronic, you get a Medtronic pump, but in my experience for pumps, I would go with either Medtronic or St Jude which use to be ANS. I have a Medtronic. Hope that helps
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Originally Posted by msdilbert2 View Post
Please excuse my lack of knowledge, but how did all of with pumps decide which type of pump to use? stimulator or med pump? Can you get trials with both before you and your md. make a final decision? thanks, Pam
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Old 07-09-2010, 12:33 AM #7
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Smile Hello Tired in Texas

Just wanted to say 'welcome' and glad you've come to the SCS/Pain Pump forum......
I am so sorry tho, for what you are going thru!
I can certainly see your concern! You're being left with few options, all of which appear to be 'guess work' from your physicians.

You are doing a good thing by checking around. I certainly wouldn't commit to any of these options until I've researched all there is to know.
And you said your insurance is not covering these procedures!? oh my.
My first instinct would be to suggest doing a trial before you make any decisions.
So, you've already had a pump and it is still in you, but you don't use it?

There are a couple more members here at NT who come to mind. I think they would be able to offer some good input. I'll track them down and point them to your post and see if they've got some good input for you.

Stick around ok! There are SO many caring folks here...
We continue to learn from one another as we share our experiences.
Caring
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Old 07-10-2010, 12:31 AM #8
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Default Thanks Rrae

Thanks for the support and that would be great if you could contact some other members who you think might be able to help.
I have chronic headaches and neck pain due to three brain/neck surgeries and I did do pump implant in lumbar region. I tried Prialt first because I tend to respond better to non-opitaes, but couldn't take side effects. So, I was on Dilaudid, Klonidine and Baclofen and went up to 20mg, but it didn't even help as much as the oral medications. Crazy, huh? So, I tappered off and now it is running saline and I am back on oral meds which is causing my body to fall apart.
I just can't find any information about cervical pump trials or implants and especially can't seem to find a Doctor who has done more than four! I am having a hard time figuring it out. Of course, insurance won't pay for it and that adds to the pressure. Anyway, thanks you so much for the e-mail and I will look forward to hearing from you or some of your friends. Take care and hope you are doing well, Melissa
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Old 07-10-2010, 01:18 AM #9
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Default Hi Melissa

I will send you a 'visitor message'....it will be on your profile page, k.
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Old 07-10-2010, 01:16 PM #10
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Post Hugs Melissa

Hi Melissa, and here come hugs your way. I am an SCS patient myself so I have no experience at all in pumps, but I do care and just want you to know you are in my prayers that an effective solution will be found for you and soon!! I do understand how hard a life living in pain presents. Rae is so right, this place is filled with MANY caring people, and I am sure she will work to find the folks to steer your direction so you might learn of the cervical pump solution you contemplate. Rae is a gem of a friend, and I am glad she reached out to me as she is doing with you.

My prayers go with you that you find THE solution for your pain,
Mark56
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