Surgical Procedures

Dorsal Root Ganglion Stimulator

A dorsal root ganglion stimulator can be beneficial for patients who are experiencing focal pain into a specific area in the lower body. Some examples of where DRG stimulation can be of benefit are pain in the groin following a hernia operation, knee pain or pain into the foot. The stimulator sends electrical currents into specific areas to interrupt the message of pain before it gets to your brain.

First of all, you need to have a trial of dorsal root ganglion stimulator to see if a permanent stimulator is likely to relieve your pain. This procedure is done in hospital under anaesthetic and with x-ray guidance. Dr Davies will insert electrodes over specific nerve where they leave the spine. A temporary device is then connected and turned on and settings adjusted to get the best coverage for your specific pain.

Usually the trial goes for around a week and Dr Davies will see you in his office and find out how your pain is during the trial period. If the trial is deemed successful, he will then make plans to insert a permanent stimulator.

You will need to have the trial leads removed and to have healed from that before we move on to the permanent stimulator.

Insertion of a permanent stimulator is done in the hospital under anaesthetic and x-ray guidance. Dr Davies will insert electrodes the same way he did with the trial. The electrodes are then tunnelled to a small battery about the size of a matchbox, which is usually placed under the skin in the upper buttock.

Wireless Bluetooth technology allows you to connect to your stimulator via a remote control. You are able to adjust settings yourself which allows you to be in control of your own therapy. Programs and settings are programmed according to each individual under the guidance of the technician who will maintain regular contact with you and make adjustment as required for the lifetime of your device.