Dorsal Root Ganglion (DRG) stimulation is a form of treatment designed to stimulate areas that cannot be reached with traditional spinal cord stimulation. The DRG is a bundle of nerves in the epidural space that receives signals from specific parts of the body. This means that stimulation of the DRG can deliver focused stimulation to a specific area. Like other types of stimulation treatments, DRG stimulation uses a device composed of electrodes and an implantable pulse generator to interrupt pain signals from reaching the brain.
Did You Know?
Dorsal Root Ganglion (DRG) stimulation was developed in 2010 as a way to treat chronic pain in areas that spinal cord stimulation was not effective in treating.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Am I a candidate for dorsal root ganglia stimulation?
You may be a candidate for dorsal root ganglia stimulation if you have experienced isolated, chronic pain in a lower part of the body such as the foot, knee, hip, or groin after an injury or surgery that hasn’t responded to other treatments. DRG stimulation has also been found to be especially effective in the treatment of complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS). To determine if you are an ideal candidate for DRG stimulation, schedule a consultation with Ascension Pain Specialists today.
What can I expect when receiving dorsal root ganglion stimulation at Ascension Pain Specialists?
The first step to receiving dorsal root ganglion stimulation is a trial run. During the trial, temporary electrodes will be placed along the affected DRG and an external stimulator will be used to stimulate the ganglion. If your pain levels do not significantly improve, then we will simply remove the temporary electrodes. It is important to note that dorsal root ganglion stimulation will not completely eliminate your pain, however it should significantly reduce its severity.
In cases where your pain levels do improve, we will then place a permanent device. This is done under mild sedation with a local anesthetic. A small incision will be made to insert the wire electrodes and a pulse generator underneath your skin. These electrodes will be placed in the epidural space where the DRG is located, while the pulse generator will be placed in the upper buttock or low back. After the device has been implanted, the electrical pulse settings will be calibrated to relieve your pain using an external remote.
What can I expect after receiving dorsal root ganglion stimulation?
After the device has been implanted, you will be observed briefly in recovery, then discharged to go home. It is recommended to take it easy that day and to wait until your doctor clears you for returning to your normal activities. In some cases, you may experience some soreness around the implant location.