Background: Chronic postsurgical pain (CPSP) can be caused by peripheral nerve injury (PNI) resulting from surgical procedures and has a significant neuropathic component. This prospective, single-arm study was conducted to document the effectiveness of 10-kHz spinal cord stimulation (10-kHz SCS) as a treatment for patients with CPSP.
Methods: Subjects with CPSP who were refractory to conventional medical interventions and reported pain scores of ≥5 cm on a 10-cm VAS underwent trial stimulations lasting up to 14 days. Epidural leads were implanted at locations appropriate for the primary area of pain, and trials resulting in ≥40% pain relief were considered successful. Subjects with successful trials underwent implantation with a permanent 10-kHz SCS system and were followed for 12 months after implantation.
Results: Of the 34 subjects who underwent trial stimulation, 1 was withdrawn early and 29 (87.9%) had a successful trial and received a permanent implant. After 12 months of treatment, the mean VAS score decreased by 6.5 cm, the response rate was 88.0% (22/25), and 18 subjects (62.1%) were remitters with VAS scores sustained at ≤3.0 cm. Scores for all components of the short-form McGill Pain Questionnaire 2 were significantly reduced, including affective descriptors of pain. Pain catastrophizing and vigilance, patient function, physical and mental well-being, and sleep quality all improved over the course of the study. No neurologic deficits reported in the study.
Conclusions: 10-kHz SCS is effective and tolerated in patients with CPSP, and further study of its clinical application in this population is warranted.
Keywords: 10-kHz SCS; chronic postsurgical pain; visual analog scale.
© 2020 The Authors. Pain Practice published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of World Institute of Pain.