Dorsal Column Spinal Cord Stimulation

Dorsal Column Spinal cord stimulation (DCS) is a technique used in the management of certain chronic pain syndromes such as failed-back surgery syndrome (FBSS), complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) and diabetic peripheral neuropathy. It can also be used for refractory angina pectoris and peripheral vascular disease. A device placed under your skin is used to send a mild electric current to your spinal cord. A small wire carries the current from a pulse generator to the nerve fibers of the spinal cord. When turned on, the stimulation feels like a mild tingling in the area where pain is felt. Stimulation does not eliminate the source of pain. Your pain is reduced because the electrical current interrupts the pain signal from reaching your brain. The amount of pain relief varies for each person. Some patients may find the tingling sensation unpleasant. For these reasons a trial stimulation is performed before the device is permanently implanted. Stimulation does not work for everyone. If unsuccessful, the implant can be safely removed.