Has anyone had the Stimwave spine stimulator installed?

Posted by WS4K @ws4k, Dec 12, 2018

Hello to ALL! I have a severe back injury and even after three surgeries and several fusions, I am still experiencing severe and chronic pain. My pain management specialist is talking about a spine stimulator. After some research I located the Stim Wave. With this unit, only the leads are implanted. No wires come through. The antenna is worn like a pager on your belt.

Has anyone tried one of the Stim Wave stimulators yet? Any feed back on them?

@baq315a

I would like to know if anyone has a Bost. sci wavewriter for lumbar area problems like I do. For some reason my left cluneal nerve is still very painful. My doc is looking into whether he can implant the stimwave as a second device. Any one like that? I don't want 3 level fusion surgery.

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I had a Medtronics Intellis spinal cord stimulator placed late January after successful trial the month before. I had a multi level lumbar fusion with screws, etc. 2011. Was fine until about 2 years ago and I did something STUPID at the gym. Resulted in severe sciatic pain lower back and esp into R leg to foot. Was offered another fusion into L5-S1. No thanks. This helps a LOT!

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Any experience with using this for knee pain?

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@mistermark

Any experience with using this for knee pain?

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I have a damaged nerve in my neck. I have used Bioness Stimrouther and currently have sprtheraputics sprint pns. also check out nalu. the only thing implanted is the lead. the stimulators are external. keep in mind that sprint is only for 60 days but some patients received good relief for a many months after. its the least invasive of all pns systems. the lead is installed with local anesthetic only.

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@quark

No, it's not a spinal cord stimulator , and it's Stim Wave technology. It's sort of similar, but they can put the very small leads close to where the pain in, but under the skin. It's then controlled with some sort of hand held piece, and it's relatively new technology.

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i believe the stimulator has to be taped or go in a specially sown pocket on your clothes. just something to be aware of. personally i would go with bioness or nalu as the devices stick on the skin with adhesive pads similar to tens units

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@ahayes

@ws4k I did have Stimwave implanted. If you are considering it for application at spine, it is worth considering. It is very high frequency, up to 1500, and higher than my Medtronic now can go.

The stimwave worked like a charm for my pain. However, I was having it implanted as a PERIPHERAL stimulator for my sciatic nerve in back of knee, to help my lower leg. The stimwave lead is very flexible, and this made me have problems with lead migration. I had 2 trials and 2 permanents. The reps for this company were working closely with my doc to determine best approach to stabilize the lead. Ultimately for me bc it was a peripheral application. and not a scs, it didnt work bc the lead was too flexible and unstable and they couldn't anchor the lead well. In an SCS application Stimwave is very stable from what my doctor told me and he uses it often.

Due to migration, lead breakage issues, and newness of the product and application for peripheral nerves we took stimwave out after the 2nd permanent system had a lead break or had a lead problem. I would say talk w ur doc closely to determine if this is right for you and your needs. Ask him how stable the lead will be and bring up lead migration. You'll know after the trial if it helps you. It helped me a lot but just wasnt right bc the company had not done many or any sciatic nerve peripheral cases. They do tons of scs cases so you would be having an approach that they vetted and tested more thoroughly.

As an aside, my case was so unique the CEO of the company was talking to my doc to give ideas in how to put in and anchor it to make it stay. This company is amazing and really supported me through the trials and difficulties I had making it work. One rep even stayed on the phone with me for hours as I was crying bc the lead moved and I could tell it wasn't working anymore. Kind people and they really care about patients and the product.

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I had Stimwave test for pens— the test was extremely painful and I am now concerned if the permanent implant will be as painful ( I felt like I had a concrete block attached to my back) my issues are sciatic and 5th vertebrae — I have had major back fusion several RFA-s and injections into sacral joint with little results- I was so excited about the implant until I had the test – now I feel apprehensive

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@miles1037

I had Stimwave test for pens— the test was extremely painful and I am now concerned if the permanent implant will be as painful ( I felt like I had a concrete block attached to my back) my issues are sciatic and 5th vertebrae — I have had major back fusion several RFA-s and injections into sacral joint with little results- I was so excited about the implant until I had the test – now I feel apprehensive

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Oops I meant PNS

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No to Stimwave, but I can tell you about Nevro SCS. I had wires and device implanted in October and it was the best decision I ever made! I finally feel fantastic. I did the trial and it was outstanding. I have 2 small scars on my back, one where the 2 leads were placed in (around?) my spine. The second is on my left flank where the device is implanted. I use a charger (looks like a drink coaster with a wire tail) placed over the unit, and when I'm not using it, it stays plugged into the wall I've had Harrington Rods, fusions, 6 screws, you name it. Today? I haven't felt this good since I was 15. I'm 63 F.

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Congratulations! I’ve had a Medtronics one for 11 months now. It’s made a huge difference. I am beginning to have a bit of discomfort in my R upper posterior thigh when walking which is making me need to increase my level of stimulation. I am going to talk to the rep about programming it. I think my back is likely getting worse in there but I’m able to walk 2+ miles most days whereas before, I was occ using a cane and not walking much at all. I was able to work in my garden all summer too! Miracles! I’m 70.

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@lifetimepain

No to Stimwave, but I can tell you about Nevro SCS. I had wires and device implanted in October and it was the best decision I ever made! I finally feel fantastic. I did the trial and it was outstanding. I have 2 small scars on my back, one where the 2 leads were placed in (around?) my spine. The second is on my left flank where the device is implanted. I use a charger (looks like a drink coaster with a wire tail) placed over the unit, and when I'm not using it, it stays plugged into the wall I've had Harrington Rods, fusions, 6 screws, you name it. Today? I haven't felt this good since I was 15. I'm 63 F.

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Thank you for your your response – I also have rods and screws etc — the Stimwave test took away 90% of the pain but as I said it was painful mainly at the incision sites— so tell me if you feel any pain from the implant. I’m sure I will still go through with the implant and I’m so looking forward to feeling myself again — I live on a golf course and haven’t touched my clubs in 5 years! I just want to be able to walk without fear that my back will go out and leave me unable to move- fingers crossed that it works as well as yours. Merry Christmas and thanks so much

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Hi Wisco—are you in Wisconsin? Just wondering cause my back went out when I was in Wisconsin and went to orthopedics in Pewaukee where they found on the mri just how horrible my back was and suggested starting the procedure requirement for PNS however I had to come back to Florida to find another doctor — I always wished I could have it done in Wisconsin— there are Medtronic and nevro that seem to have positive results but my dr. Only does Stimwave —I
like my dr. And the rep from stimwave and I can only pray it works as well on me

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@miles1037

Thank you for your your response – I also have rods and screws etc — the Stimwave test took away 90% of the pain but as I said it was painful mainly at the incision sites— so tell me if you feel any pain from the implant. I’m sure I will still go through with the implant and I’m so looking forward to feeling myself again — I live on a golf course and haven’t touched my clubs in 5 years! I just want to be able to walk without fear that my back will go out and leave me unable to move- fingers crossed that it works as well as yours. Merry Christmas and thanks so much

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Just as an FYI – check out whatever info you can find about what brand(s) are recommended. Some of what I’m reading is confusing! My Medtronics had two implant options – one with a permanent battery that would need replacing in X number of years (likely depending on how much you “need”) or one that you charge externally – that’s the kind I have. I have what looks like a flat doughnut with wires, that I place over my implant (high in my buttock, below my waist) – it plugs into what I call my remote aka transmitter. This will charge my implanted battery. It is also the device I carry or keep near me at all times. It allows me to adjust the settings/intensity of my stimulation to block my pain sensation from my spine. It’s about the size of a cell phone but a little thicker.
I see pros and cons of this vs a permanent battery. This is easy to use and I usually recharge it when watching tv or even sleeping at night (I wear leggings at night so it doesn’t shift around, works great!). The down side is I like to travel and would love another trip to Africa, safari style. Going to have to look into that very carefully for ability to get to a power source (to recharge the battery in my remote which then in turn can recharge my implant). Hope this makes sense.

Just as an FYI, I’ve had a multi level lumbar fusion, now have “moderate to severe” stenosis at other levels. It was strongly suggested I have more fusion levels added to my current one. I just didn’t want that to be my only option and the idea of another major back surgery now, age 70, wasn’t feeling good to me. :<(. I hope this stimulator works long time or long enough that less invasive surgical methods or some drug come along to give me relief. It’s like a waiting game, I guess?! 🤔

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@miles1037

Hi Wisco—are you in Wisconsin? Just wondering cause my back went out when I was in Wisconsin and went to orthopedics in Pewaukee where they found on the mri just how horrible my back was and suggested starting the procedure requirement for PNS however I had to come back to Florida to find another doctor — I always wished I could have it done in Wisconsin— there are Medtronic and nevro that seem to have positive results but my dr. Only does Stimwave —I
like my dr. And the rep from stimwave and I can only pray it works as well on me

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Hi, yes, I am in Wisconsin. I live within a half hour of Madison and am a retired RN who worked at one of the Madison hospitals.
I was not happy with the Pain Management doctor I was seeing – once Neurosurgery suggested surgery it was like she just gave up on suggesting any other options. I had asked about ablation but because it was my sciatic nerve, was told it wasn’t possible. So I sought a second opinion at a place called Advanced Pain Management. They tried a few other things but when that didn’t work they suggested a spinal cord stimulator. The MD I saw worked mostly with Medtronics but there were several brands they had reps for and that they would work with.
I think you should do more asking around to see what you can find out about what’s available to you. If your insurance allows you that freedom great, if you have Medicare, even better!
Don’t give up, call around, look up stuff online, ask by word of mouth!

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