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Post Op - Spinal Cord Stimulator


Spinal Cord Stimulator Trial


The following instructions are to guide you through your post-operative period.

You will be taken to a room to rest until you are fully awake. Caregivers will monitor you closely for any problems. Do not get out of bed until your caregiver says it is okay.

  • Do not get your dressing or equipment wet. Sponge baths only.
  • Reinforce dressing if needed.
  • Use caution when bending at the waist, twisting and lifting your arms above your shoulders. This will reduce the possibility of lead movement which may result in loss of stimulation.
  • Do not drive or operate heavy machinery while stimulator is turned on.
  • Coumadin and Plavix should be held for the duration of trial.
  • Lovenox should be held 24 hours before trial and 24 hours after lead insertion. Then resume Lovenox. Then hold Lovenox again 24 hours before and after lead removal.
  • Write in your pain Journal three times per day.

You may need any of the following:

  • Pain medicine takes away or decreases your pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine.
  • Antibiotics are given to prevent or treat an infection caused by bacteria.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell them if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to followup visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
Follow up

Contact primary healthcare provider or surgeon as directed:

  • You will need to have the temporary SCS removed or re placed with a permanent SCS. After the permanent SCS is placed, you will need to return to have your stitches removed and the device checked. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
  • Your incisions become swollen, red, more painful, or have pus coming from them.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Follow these safety instructions for 6 to 8 weeks or as directed by your primary healthcare provider or surgeon:

  • Do not bend at the waist, twist, stretch.
  • Do not sleep on your stomach.
  • Do not lift anything heavier than 5 pounds.
  • Do not drive until your primary healthcare provider says it is okay.
What you need to know about your SCS
  • Your primary healthcare provider will give you an identification card with information about your device. Keep this with you at all times. Show the card to all your caregivers and tell them you have an implanted SCS. Some tests and procedures may damage the SNS.
  • Turn off the SCS before you walk through a security system, including in stores. The SCS can set off security systems. Metal detectors and security systems can also increase the stimulation from the SCS. Show your identification card and ask to get through security points without going through security systems.
  • Turn off the SCS before you drive or operate machinery or power tools. Microwave ovens are safe to use.
  • The device can damage or erase credit cards and computer disks. Keep them at least 2 inches away from your SNS.
  • Ask your primary healthcare provider for instructions on bathing and swimming once your wound has healed.
  • Ask your primary healthcare provider before you scuba dive or enter a hyperbaric chamber. These activities can cause the leads to move and increase pain.
Wound care

Ask your primary healthcare provider or surgeon how to care for your surgery wound. Look for signs of infection each day, such as swelling, redness, pain, or pus. You will need to know how to clean the wound and when to change your bandages. Ask if you need to keep the wound covered when you bathe.


Ice helps decrease swelling and pain. Ice may also help prevent tissue damage. Use an ice pack, cover it with a towel and place on wound for 15 to 20 min. every hour or as directed.


Ask your primary healthcare provider or surgeon about exercises you can do safely while you have the SCS. Light exercise can help you get stronger and may help decrease pain.

Reasons To Call Your Doctor

Call the clinic at (320) 763-8888 if you experience increase redness, drainage, swelling or pain at the lead insertion site, or if you develop a fever over 100Ë�F.