Peripheral Nerve Stimulation

Peripheral Nerve Stimulation (PNS)

For more than 50 years, nerve stimulation has been used as a treatment for chronic pain. The technology was initially used to block pain signals at the spinal cord. Innovation and scientific advancements have made it possible to customize this therapy to the peripheral nerves of the arms and legs.

Wireless Peripheral Nerve Stimulation

If you have chronic pain, peripheral nerve stimulation can help. It uses electrical pulses to disrupt pain signals. It may reduce your need for pain medications. Here's how it works.

Am I a good candidate?

To determine if you’re a good candidate, we will perform a nerve block, placing numbing medicine around the nerve in innervating the painful area to see if your pain goes away. If your pain is eliminated temporarily, then you may be a good candidate for a test run of peripheral nerve stimulation where you get to try the therapy before getting the final procedure.  

  • Trial: During a trial, a temporary thin wire is placed  under the skin close to the nerve associated with the pain. This wire connects wirelessly to an external device that delivers stimulation to the nerve to block pain signals. The trial usually lasts 3 - 10 days, during which time we will assess the effectiveness of treatment. If you get significant relief of pain and/or significant improvement in your function, and reduction in narcotic pain medicine then the trial is considered a successful trial and a permanent lead placement is not offered.
  • Permanent: Permanent lead placement for peripheral nerve stimulation involves placing leads under the skin, close to the affected nerve. The power source is worn externally when stimulation is desired. There is no battery placed under the skin in peripheral nerve stimulation.  

What is the success rate?

We use the diagnostic nerve block and trial procedure to predict who will get relief.  You get to test drive the therapy and see if it is successful before having the permanent procedure.

What are the complications?

Complications are rare but the include: hardware failure, loss of effectiveness, allergic reaction to the device, lead removal, and biological complications such as increased pain, and skin erosion. Sophisticated neuromodulation devices, doctor expertise, sterile operating conditions and image guidance keep complications to a minimum.

What to expect afterwards?

We will explain what to expect before, during, and after the treatment. If you want sedation for your procedure, we advise you to have a responsible adult drive you home. You are welcome to do the procedure awake, under local anesthesia if you would prefer. You may need to stop taking certain medicines (blood thinners) several days before your procedure.  You may have soreness and bruising in the area of the injection and where the wire was placed.  Most patients will get back to normal within a few days.

  • Other Treatments

  • Conservative Therapy
  • Joint Injection
  • Lumbar Epidural Injection
  • Lumbar Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA)
  • Medial Branch Block
  • MLS Laser Therapy
  • Peripheral Nerve Stimulation
  • Regenerative Therapy
  • Sacroiliac Injection (SI)
  • Spinal Cord Stimulation For Diabetic Foot Pain
  • Sympathetic Nerve Block
  • Trigger Point Injection