Spinal Cord Stimulation May Be The Solution To Your Chronic Pain

Feb 06, 2024

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Garden State Pain and Orthopedics specializes in spinal cord stimulation - an alternative treatment for those who have tried many therapies for their chronic pain and have not experienced any relief. Read more to learn about spinal cord stimulation.

How does spinal cord stimulation work?

Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) works by delivering low-voltage electrical impulses to the spinal cord to interfere with the transmission of pain signals to the brain. Here are is how it works: 

  1. First, one or more thin, flexible electrodes are implanted near the spinal cord in the epidural space. The exact placement depends on the location of the pain being treated.
  2. Once the electrodes are in place, they are connected to a small generator device, which is usually implanted under the skin in the abdomen or buttock area. This generator produces electrical pulses.
  3. The electrical pulses generated by the device create a tingling sensation called paresthesia, which helps to mask or interrupt the pain signals traveling from the spinal cord to the brain. This can result in a significant reduction in the perception of pain.You have the ability to control the spinal cord stimulator through an app. 
  • The spinal cord stimulator can essentially "close the gate" on pain signals, preventing them from reaching the brain and reducing the sensation of pain

Spinal cord stimulation may also modulate the release of neurotransmitters involved in pain perception, such as endorphins and serotonin, which can further help to alleviate pain. Our pain management physicians at Garden State Pain and Orthopedics specialized in spinal cord stimulation. If you have any additional questions about SCS that are not addressed in this blog, you can schedule an appointment with them by selecting the “Book Now” button. 

Who is a candidate for spinal cord stimulation?

Candidates for spinal cord stimulation typically have chronic pain that unfazed from other surgeries, or conservative treatments like medication and  physical therapy Specific criteria for candidacy may vary depending on individual circumstances our provider’s recommendations, but generally, candidates for SCS may include paients who:

  • Have chronic neuropathic pain conditions, such as failed back surgery syndrome, complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), neuropathic limb pain, or peripheral neuropathy.
  • Experience persistent pain despite other conservative treatments, including medications, physical therapy, and injections.
  • Have pain that significantly impairs daily functioning and quality of life.
  • Do not have medical conditions that would interfere with the implantation procedure or the use of the SCS device, such as an active infection, bleeding disorder, or untreated psychiatric illness.
  • Have realistic expectations about the potential benefits and limitations of SCS.
  • Have undergone a trial period of spinal cord stimulation, during which temporary electrodes are placed to assess the effectiveness of the treatment.


What conditions can spinal cord stimulation treat?

Spinal cord stimulation is primarily used to treat chronic pain conditions, particularly those that are neuropathic in nature. Neuropathic pain is caused by damage or dysfunction of the nervous system and is often described as shooting, burning, or tingling sensations. Some of the conditions that spinal cord stimulation may be used to treat include:

  • Failed Back Surgery Syndrome (FBSS): This condition refers to persistent or recurring pain following one or more spinal surgeries.
  • Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS): CRPS is a chronic pain condition that typically affects one limb, often following injury or trauma.
  • Peripheral Neuropathy: Peripheral neuropathy is a disorder that affects the peripheral nerves, causing symptoms such as numbness, tingling, and pain, usually in the hands and feet.
  • Ischemic Limb Pain: This type of pain occurs due to reduced blood flow to a limb, often associated with conditions such as peripheral artery disease (PAD) or vasculitis.
  • Peripheral Vascular Disease: Spinal cord stimulation may be used to manage pain associated with conditions that affect blood vessels outside of the heart and brain, such as PAD or Raynaud's disease.
  • Angina Pectoris: SCS can be used as a treatment option for refractory angina, a type of chest pain caused by reduced blood flow to the heart.
  • Postherpetic Neuralgia: This is a chronic pain condition that occurs following an outbreak of shingles (herpes zoster), a viral infection.
  • Arachnoiditis: Arachnoiditis is a painful inflammation of the arachnoid membrane surrounding the spinal cord, often resulting from spinal surgery, infection, or trauma.
  • Chronic Pelvic Pain: SCS may be considered for certain types of chronic pelvic pain, such as pudendal neuralgia or interstitial cystitis.
  • Other Neuropathic Pain Syndromes: Spinal cord stimulation may also be used to treat other types of neuropathic pain not listed here, depending on individual circumstances and response to other treatments.

It's important to note that while spinal cord stimulation can provide significant pain relief for many with chronic pain, it may not be suitable or effective for everyone.


How effective is spinal cord stimulation in managing pain?

Studies and trials show that spinal cord stimulation has been found to be very effective in managing various types of chronic pain, particularly neuropathic pain conditions that are resistant to other forms of treatment.The effectiveness of spinal cord stimulation varies for every individual. All patients go through a 7-day trial phase to test their level of pain relief. The spinal cord stimulator is only then implanted in patients who experience a significant reduction in pain. 


Will I still need to take pain medications after getting a spinal cord stimulator?

Whether you'll need pain medication after getting a spinal cord stimulator depends on various factors, including the effectiveness of the SCS in managing your pain. SCS should reduce the need to take pain medication. However, spinal cord stimulation does not make you feel “numb” and you may still need to take pain medications. 


Can spinal cord stimulation completely eliminate pain, or is it more about managing it?

Spinal cord stimulation is typically more about managing pain rather than completely eliminating it. While SCS can provide significant relief for many individuals with chronic pain, it's important to understand that sometimes it does not completely eliminate pain. Pain perception varies widely among individuals, and what works well for one person may not be as effective for another. SCS may provide substantial pain relief for some individuals but only partial relief for others

Spinal cord stimulation is often used to manage neuropathic pain conditions that are difficult to treat with conventional therapies. While SCS can help interrupt pain signals and provide relief, it may not address the underlying cause of the pain, particularly if it's related to ongoing tissue damage or inflammation. Achieving optimal pain relief with SCS often requires careful adjustment of the device settings and programming. It may take some time to find the right combination of parameters that provide the best pain relief with minimal side effects.

It's important for individuals undergoing spinal cord stimulation to have realistic expectations about the outcomes of the procedure. While SCS can significantly improve quality of life for many individuals, it may not result in complete pain elimination.


Spinal cord stimulation provides pain relief by modifying the way pain signals are transmitted and perceived by the nervous system, rather than by directly addressing the underlying cause of the pain. It is used as a treatment option for individuals who have not found relief from other conservative treatments and who are not candidates for or have not benefited from surgery.Garden State Pain and Orthopedics specializes in SCS, and can create a personalized treatment plan for you determining if spinal cord stimulation is right for you. 

You can schedule an appointment by selecting “Book Now”, or read more about our doctors below. 

Pain Management Providers:


Dr. Saurabh Dang, MD, MBA - Pain Medicine Physician

Dr Dang offers multiple therapies for the treatment of chronic pain including: Intrathecal drug delivery system implantation, Dorsal Column Spinal Cord Stimulation implantation, Dorsal Root Spinal Cord Stimulation implantation, Insertion of interspinous spacer for spinal stenosis, SI joint arthrodesis, kyphoplasty, minimally invasive lumbar decompression (mild procedure) for spinal stenosis, and percutaneous tenotomy among others to treat chronic pain. 


Dr. Dev Sinha, MD - Pain Medicine Physician

Dr. Dev Sinha specializes in pain medicine and physical medicine and rehabilitation at Garden State Pain & Orthopedics integrating physical and behavioral therapies, medications, and the most innovative, minimally-invasive procedures. He is available in Clifton, Jersey City, and Edison. 


Dr. Neil Sinha, MD - Pain Medicine Physician

Dr. Sinha is especially interested in treating cervical and lumbar pain, sciatica, spinal stenosis, and post-laminectomy syndrome. He also specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of complex regional pain syndrome, facial pain, and headaches. Dr. Neil Sinha is available in Edison, Clifton, Hazlet, and Jersey City, New Jersey.


Dr. Jahnna Levy, DO - Pain Medicine Physician 

As an osteopathic physiatrist, Dr. Levy believes in a multifaceted and holistic approach to pain management. She treats each person as an individual, formulating a systematic treatment plan to restore function, reduce pain, and improve their quality of life. Along with neck, back, and joint pain, Dr. Levy also treats vein conditions such as varicose veins and spider veins at Garden State Pain and Orthopedics’ locations in West Orange, Clifton, Jersey City, and Edison. 


Dr. Dipan Patel, MD - Pain Medicine Physician

Dr. Dipan Patel specializes in Botox® for chronic pain disorders, trigeminal neuralgia, temporomandibular joint disorders, and headache and chronic migraine. He also specializes in complex regional pain syndrome, joint pain, and post-laminectomy syndrome at four of our office locations in Edison, Clifton, Hazlet, and Jersey City, New Jersey.


Dr. Andrew So - Pain Medicine Physician

Dr. So specializes in neck pain, back pain, spine pain, post-laminectomy syndrome, headache pain, migraine pain, joint pain, knee pain, shoulder pain, hip pain, neuropathy, acute, and post-surgical pain syndromes, and complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), amongst others in Clifton, Jersey City, Edison, and West Orange. 


Tyler Duggan, PA - Pain Medicine Physician Assistant

Tyler Duggan is a nationally certified physician assistant who specializes in pain management. He believes in a multimodal, evidence-based strategy for the treatment of both acute and chronic pain utilizing the most advanced, minimally invasive techniques when necessary. Tyler is located in Clifton, Jersey City, and Edison, New Jersey. 

Orthopedic Providers:


Dr. Deepan Patel, MD - Orthopedic Specialist

Dr. Patel practices in Garden State Pain and Orthopedics’ Jersey City, Clifton, West Orange, and Edison locations and specializes in sports injuries, tendon repairs, joint replacements, arthroscopic surgery, and tends to all injuries related to the shoulder, knee, hip, elbow, wrist, and ankle. He offers innovative treatment options for common sports-related injuries, including ACL tears, meniscus tears, and labral tears.


Dr. Scott Hanauer, MD - Foot and Ankle Specialist

Dr. Hanauer is located in Clifton, Jersey City, Edison, and West Orange, and provides treatments for all injuries related to the foot and ankle. Achilles ruptures, bunions, bunionettes, hammertoes, fractures, and ligament reconstruction are commonly treated by Dr. Hanauer. He also specializes in reconstructive foot and ankle surgery, including ankle replacement, flat foot and cavus foot reconstruction, and ankle and midfoot fusions.


Matt Jensen, PA - Orthopedic Physician Assistant

Physician Assistant Matt Jenses helps patients with injuries related to the shoulder, knee, hip, elbow, wrist, and ankle, and works out of Jersey City, Clifton, Edison, and West Orange. 




Address: 1117 Route 46 East, Suite 301, Clifton, NJ 07013

Phone: 973-777-5444



Address: 25 South Main Street, Suite 12, Edison, NJ 08837

Phone: 732-376-0330


Jersey City

Address: 631 Grand Street, Suite 2-100, Jersey City, NJ 07304

Phone: 973-777-5444



Address: 226 Middle Road, Suite 4, Hazlet, NJ 07730 

Phone: 732-376-0330 


West Orange

Address: 443 Northfield Ave West Orange, NJ 07052

Phone: 732-376-0330