Nevro therapy can help patients who haven’t found relief in other ways.
Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is a form of neuromodulation. Neuromodulation is the process of interfering with painful nerve impulses by the use of electrical stimulation. Although SCS has been in use for decades, there is a newer technique that has been shown to be superior: Nevro HF10 therapy.
- May be recommended for patients with leg or back pain
- Could be suggested if other methods like medication and surgery have failed
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What is Nevro HF10 Therapy?
Nevro is the brand name of the device, and HF10 stands for high frequency, 10,000 hertz. Older devices used low-frequency impulses that simply masked the pain. HF10 therapy uses high-frequency pulses that actually block the pain.
A study that followed patients over a 24-month period found that HF10 therapy produced significantly better results than older methods of SCS. After three months, 84.5 percent of the HF10 recipients reported at least 50 percent improvement in their level of back pain. Only 43.8 percent of the users of the older method reported an improvement of this level. After 24 months, 76.5 percent of the HF10 group still reported this level of back pain relief compared to 49.3 percent of the group using the older method. Similar results were reported for patients with leg pain.
Another advantage of HF10 therapy is that it does not produce the buzzing, tingling feeling associated with previous SCS technologies. This sensation, called paresthesia, was found to be annoying and distracting to most people using SCS, so the elimination of that effect is a big step forward.
How Does HF10 Therapy Work?
The Nevro HF10 system consists of thin wires connected to a battery pack. The wires are inserted into the area around the spinal cord, and the battery pack is implanted under the skin of the back. A handheld remote control allows you to turn the device off or on. The implantation procedure is relatively quick and does not usually require a hospital stay.
In order to make sure the HF10 device will work for you, you will have a trial period of about a week. During this trial, the battery pack will not be implanted; it will be worn on a belt. If the trial is successful, the pack will be implanted.
You can use the HF10 system whenever you need it, including when you are sleeping and driving. It also does not interfere with any medications that your doctor recommends.
Who is a Candidate for HF10 Therapy?
Nevro HF10 therapy is used for the relief of refractory back or leg pain. This sort of pain may be the result of damage to the spinal nerves after an injury. It also often follows failed back surgery. Other causes include amputation and disease processes such as viral infections.
Your doctor will evaluate your condition based on your medical history, psychological state and thoracic imaging. The results of this evaluation will determine if you are a good candidate for a successful response to HF10 therapy.