Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Reducing wait times could improve spinal cord stimulator success for chronic pain

Date:
March 6, 2014
Source:
American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM)
Summary:
Success rates soared to 75% for patients who waited less than 2 years for a spinal cord stimulator (SCS) implant, compared with 15% for patients whose implants happened 20 years after the onset of pain, according to a retrospective analysis. The length of time patients waited for a referral also varied by specialty.

Success rates soared to 75% for patients who waited less than 2 years for a spinal cord stimulator (SCS) implant, compared with 15% for patients whose implants happened 20 years after the onset of pain, according to a retrospective analysis. The length of time patients waited for a referral also varied by specialty, as shown in a scientific poster presented today at the 30th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Pain Medicine.

The study authors placed their findings in context by noting that fewer than 50% of patients currently report long-term success with SCS in the treatment of chronic pain. Improving wait times could significantly improve success rates, said lead author Krishna Kumar, MD, of Regina General Hospital in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada.

"The success of SCS is time sensitive, in that as wait times decline, long-term outcomes with SCS are enhanced," Dr. Kumar said.

Dr. Kumar cited barriers to referral that included lack of uptake and awareness among healthcare providers, patients and payers; ongoing reimbursement concerns; and fragmentation of pain-care delivery. Moreover, Dr. Kumar cited return to employment as a metric that has been unfairly employed to curtail access to SCS, a tactic he said downplays benefits of SCS for quality of life, pain and depression.

The study included 443 patients who received SCS. Beginning with the initial pain diagnosis, investigators examined points of delay to referral for implantation by primary care physicians and specialists. The effects on pain duration of gender, age, referring specialty, and their interactions were analyzed using a 2-way ANOVA. A multiple linear regression model that incorporated patient demographic characteristics and components of wait times was developed to predict factors responsible for delays in SCS implantation.

Patients first saw a physician an average of 3.4 months after developing a pain syndrome. Family physicians managed patients for 11.9 months. Specialists then took over management for an additional 39.8 months on average.

The mean time to implantation from symptom onset was 5.12 years. Neurosurgeons were quickest to make a referral, whereas, non-implanting anesthetists were most likely to delay implantation. In fact, referral for SCS treatment took 2.15 years longer if a non-implanting anesthetist vs. a neurosurgeon referred the patient.

Successful SCS outcomes depend on appropriate candidate selection, and Dr. Kumar highlighted the importance of examining underlying pain pathology to help determine who might benefit. For example, patients suffering from failed back surgery syndrome, complex regional pain syndrome, refractory angina pectoris, pain due to peripheral vascular disease, postherpetic neuralgia, chronic migraine or post-surgical neuropathy are considered good candidates for SCS. Red flags Dr. Kumar cited were secondary gain from litigation, persistent uncontrolled or undiagnosed psychiatric disorder, unwillingness to curb inappropriate drug use and cognitive issues that could interfere with operation of SCS equipment.

Education, patient advocacy, basic science and clinical research all could aid the integration of SCS into the pain-management continuum, Dr. Kumar concluded.

"Chronic pain is a disease unto itself, which is responsible for physical and psychosocial suffering. The importance of timely treatment must, therefore, be recognized by all physicians."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM). "Reducing wait times could improve spinal cord stimulator success for chronic pain." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140306211027.htm>.
American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM). (2014, March 6). Reducing wait times could improve spinal cord stimulator success for chronic pain. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140306211027.htm
American Academy of Pain Medicine (AAPM). "Reducing wait times could improve spinal cord stimulator success for chronic pain." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140306211027.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Drug Used To Treat 'Ebola's Cousin' Shows Promise

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) An experimental drug used to treat Marburg virus in rhesus monkeys could give new insight into a similar treatment for Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two US Ebola Patients Leave Hospital Free of the Disease

Two US Ebola Patients Leave Hospital Free of the Disease

AFP (Aug. 21, 2014) Two American missionaries who were sickened with Ebola while working in Liberia and were treated with an experimental drug are doing better and have left the hospital, doctors say on August 21, 2014. Duration: 01:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream

AP (Aug. 21, 2014) Contains graphic content. He's only 17. But Johntrell Bowles has wanted to be a doctor from a young age, despite the odds against him. He was recently the youngest participant in a cadaver program at the Indiana University NW medical school. (Aug. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
American Ebola Patients Released: What Cured Them?

American Ebola Patients Released: What Cured Them?

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) It's unclear whether the American Ebola patients' recoveries can be attributed to an experimental drug or early detection and good medical care. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins