Retrospective analysis on the effect of spinal cord stimulation on opioid consumption.

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Aim: Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is used to clinically manage and/or treat several chronic pain etiologies. A limited amount is known about the influence on patients’ use of opioid pain medication. This retrospective analysis evaluated SCS effect on opioid consumption in patients presenting with chronic pain conditions. Materials & methods: Sixty-seven patients underwent a temporary trial device, permanent implant or both. Patients were divided for assessment based on the nature of their procedure(s). Primary outcome was change in morphine equivalent dose (MED), ascertained from preoperative and postoperative medication reports. Results: Postoperative MED was significantly lower in patients who received some form of neuromodulation therapy. Pretrial patients reported an average MED of 41.01 ± 10.23 mg per day while post-trial patients reported an average of 13.30 ± 5.34 mg per day (p 50 mg per day. Conclusion: Spinal cord stimulation may reduce opioid use when implemented appropriately. Neuromodulation may represent alternative therapy for alleviating chronic pain which may avoid a number of deleterious side effects commonly associated with opioid consumption.

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