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The trialing system mimics the actual treatment without requiring you to have the neurostimulator implanted. Mild electrical pulses from the external neurostimulator (A) travel through the temporary leads (B) to the nerves along your spinal cord. The wireless programmer (C) lets you adjust the stimulation levels.
Discuss your therapy goals with your physicians. Make a list of goals you would like to achieve if your pain were managed better. For example, one goal might be to walk to the back of the grocery store without resting.
You may receive a workbook to track pain relief and improvement in your day-to-day activities. This will help you and your physician assess your response to the spinal cord stimulation trial and personalize your therapy.
The trial procedure usually takes about 30 to 90 minutes and is done in a clinic, day surgery center, or hospital.
The trial period can last up to 10 days. With your trialing system in place, live as normally as possible. Consider doing some of the things you normally can’t do because of your pain — like walking up stairs, standing in one place, or getting ready in the morning. The benefits of the screening trial may be immediate or they may take a few days.
Complications can occur during the trial, including bleeding into the epidural space, infection, and other side effects. You should not undergo a trial if you have an active infection at the time of the procedure.
Keep your doctor’s number handy, in case you have any questions.
Every patient experience is unique. Not everyone who receives Medtronic neurostimulation therapy will experience the same results.
Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.