Spinal Cord Stimulation in Chicago, IL

Spinal Cord Stimulation


Spinal Cord Stimulator (SCS) procedures involve the implantation of a computerized battery-operated device that sends electrical signals to the spinal cord to intercept pain signals to the brain. Recent advances have made the stimulators last as long as eight years.

How It’s Performed

It is important to note that the patient decides to have the permanent procedure performed only after the patient has had a successful trial spinal cord stimulator. An Illinois Pain & Spine Institute pain management physician then implants a permanent device under the skin that sends mild electrical impulses to the spinal cord, while the patient is lightly sedated. This ultimately provides long-term pain relief.

Candidates For This Procedure

People suffering from neuropathic pain – burning, stabbing or tingling pain – particularly after previous back or leg surgery as well as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD).

How Long It Takes

The spinal cord stimulation procedure can take up to 2 to 3 hours.


Patients may experience procedure-related pain for a few days. Lifting, bending, stretching, and twisting should be avoided immediately following the procedure. However, light exercise is encouraged to build strength and help relieve pain.


Approximately, 50% of patients respond favorably to a three to five day trial. Of those responding favorably the pain is reduced from severe to a tingling sensation.

FAQ’S About Spinal Cord Stimulation in Chicago

Will I be totally pain-free with spinal cord stimulation?

Spinal cord stimulation is not a cure for pain, but it also depends on the severity of your pain and the individual. In many cases, people who use SCS will see a significant improvement of 50-80% in their pain. SCS can also help people who have not had success with other treatments like medication or surgery. If you’re considering SCS, contact us for spinal cord stimulation in Chicago at (630) 748-3300 to learn more.

When can I go back to my usual activity after spinal cord stimulation?

Most people can return to their regular activities within a few days or weeks after the spinal cord stimulation procedure. The dressing over the incision sites can be removed after about 3 days, and in most cases, incisions heal within 2-4 weeks. You will be given specific instructions about your recovery plan, but generally, it is recommended to avoid strenuous activity for 2 weeks following surgery. Our team for spinal cord stimulation in Chicago will work with you to ensure a smooth and successful recovery.

Will the SCS implant be visible? Can anyone see it?

The spinal cord stimulator implant is not visible under the skin. However, you will be able to feel the device by pressing on the skin as it is about the diameter of a silver dollar. Our doctors for SCS implant in Chicago will ensure it is positioned comfortably and conveniently. So, the only way someone will know you have it is if you tell them.

Will spinal cord stimulation allow me to stop taking pain medications?

Spinal cord stimulation aims to help you reduce your dependence on pain medications. In some cases, people are able to stop taking pain medications altogether. For others, SCS may help you reduce the amount of pain medication you need. Either way, it’s best to discuss your options with our doctors for spinal cord stimulation in Chicago, so they can develop a personalized treatment plan for you.

How easy is it to recharge the implant battery?

The spinal cord stimulator implant battery is designed to last for several years. When it does need to be recharged, the process is very simple and can be done in the comfort of your own home. The charger is lightweight, cordless, and portable so that you can charge on the go too. Our team for spinal cord stimulators in Chicago will provide you with all the instructions you need to recharge the device, and we’re always available to answer any questions you may have.