This essay T echnical Description has a total of 1089 words and 9 pages.
T echnical Description
The Healer of Chronic Pain Pg. 3
History of Neurostimulation Pg. 3
Technical Description & How it Works Pg. 4
Risks of Neurostimulator Pg. 5
Biomedical Success Pg. 5
Figures Pg. 6
The Healer of Chronic Pain
Neuropathic pain is a state of intractable chronic pain in the legs, arms or back. This recurring pain is truly debilitating to patients, leaving them unable to carry out simple duties such as walking, lifting things, sitting for long periods of time, an d many more minor customary activities. A Neurostimulator or Implantable Pulse Generator (IPG) or Spinal Cord Stimulator is a device that extraordinarily relieves such chronic pain. The Burst DR stimulation, found only at St. Jude Medical is the latest advancement in neurostimulation. "BurstDR stimulation has been clinically proven in numerous studies around the world to provide superior pain relief compared to other traditional neurostimulation therapy."
History of Neurostimulation
The earliest form of neurostimulation occurred in Mesopotamia. Electrical torpedo fish would shock the human body stunning the nervous system and subsequently numbing it of all pain, causing therapeutic relief. This application was usually used on those suffering from headaches or arthritis. Ancient Egyptian and Roman physicians, have also used torpedo ray shocks to heal ceaseless pain, this being the most primitive form of neurostimulation therapy. Implanting electronic devices that influence the function of the nervous system began in the 1960s as a result of data ga thered from historical forms of neuromodulation. The innovator of the neurostimulator, Clyde Norman Shealy, is a neurosurgeon who specializes in pain medicine. He implanted the first device in 1967.
Technical Description & How it Works
The neurostimulator is a mechanism in which three parts work together to operate. The generator, the leads, and the controller. The generator is a small device, equivalent to the size of a stopwatch, which induces pulses that travel to the brain and halt pain signals. The device is surgically implanted in the buttock area or lower back (See Figure 1.1). The leads are thin wires attached to the generator, and placed on the spinal column along the epidural part of one's spine. The generator sends electrical pulses to the leads which deliver them alon g the spinal cord to the brain (See Figure 1.2). The controller is like a remote controller which the patient keeps at hand when they would like to be gin the stimulation or whenever they're in pain. The neurostimulator modifies pain messages before they reach the brain. It is rechargeable, so one must press their skin where the generator is placed. Next, the recharger is moved to the area right above the neurostimulator, attached to a belt around the waist. Then, a green button on the charger must be pressed to begin charging the SCS (Spinal Cord Stimulator).
Risks of Neurostimulator
There are a few risks that come with the operation of implanting a Spinal Cord Stimulator. First, an infection or an allergic reaction can occur. If a mistake happens during operation, another risk would be spinal fluid leakage, leading to Intracranial Hypotension or absolutely unbearable headaches. A major risk that, to some patients, acts as a strong reason to reject such an operation, is permanent paralysis after surgery. The (IPG) revolves around the spine and often times, the result of spinal cord injury is paralysis. Other risks that correlate to the stimulator itself include; the leads moving or being damaged requiring a follow-up surgery to reposition them. Over-stimulation can also occur, leaving a patient in even more pain. Lastly, once done with the operation, the stimulator may have poor con nection and an unfortunate risk would be that the therapy completely doesn't work.
Although it carries several risks, the surgically implanted neurostimulator has proven to alleviate severe chronic discomfort. The electrical pulses that travel on the leads to the brain, modify the journey of pain signals, a revolutionary way to treat