Dorsal Root Ganglion (Drg) Neuromodulation
Dorsal root ganglion (DRG) stimulation uses implantable neurostimulation technology, a technique similar to SCS (spinal cord stimulation). Whereas SCS treats the spinal cord, DRG targets the dorsal root ganglion, or DRG.
The DRG, an easily accessible nerve bundle in the spine, is central to treating certain types of chronic pain – especially in areas that were difficult to treat with SCS, and superior for treating complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS).
DRG neuromodulation is a safe and effective therapy that has been used for more than 40 years. It is a widely accepted FDA-approved medical treatment for chronic pain of the trunk and limbs (back, legs, and arms). With as many as 50,000 neurostimulators implanted worldwide every year, this technology continues to offer hope and relief for those suffering from chronic pain.
These downloadable documents provide additional information about this minimally invasive procedure:
DRG sends electrical impulses that trigger selected nerve roots, replacing painful sensations with soothing, tingling sensations. This feeling is similar to the relief you might feel by rubbing or massaging an area after an injury occurs. The electrical impulses can be targeted to specific locations and, as pain changes or improves, stimulation can be adjusted when necessary.
DRG is most commonly used to treat complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) and chronic pain in areas that are difficult to treat with SCS, such as the hand, foot, knee, groin, and chest.
DRG stimulation may be an effective tool in reducing your chronic pain. However, it is important to understand that pain is unique to each individual, and not everything works the same on everyone. DRG is one of several therapies that may be used to help control severe, ongoing neuropathic pain. Other options, which doctors usually try first, include physical therapy, different types of medications, injections, and sometimes surgery.
Talk to your pain management specialist to find out if dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neuromodulation can help you take control of your pain. DRG is generally considered successful if:
- Your pain is significantly reduced
- You are able to get back to your daily activities
- You are able to relax and sleep better
The goal of DRG is to achieve significant or total relief from pain and to be able to return to a happy, productive lifestyle.
With DRG therapy, you can experience numerous benefits in addition to the pain relief, which may include:
- The ability to try the therapy before having a permanent system placed in your body. You can test drive the DRG system to see if it helps control your pain before committing to a permanent system.
- While many level 3 therapies are permanent, even a permanent DRG procedure is reversible. Even though the device is surgically implanted, it can always be turned off or surgically removed by your pain specialist.
- DRG therapy may help control difficult pain in the low back and legs—even when other therapies have failed.
- It is approved by the FDA for the management of chronic pain due to complex regional pain syndrome I and II.
- It is covered by most health insurance plans, including Medicare.
Your pain management specialist will be happy to discuss DRG therapy and other treatment options with you. It is important to note that while thousands of patients with severe chronic painful conditions have received relief with DRG stimulation, every case is unique, and there is no guarantee that DRG therapy will alleviate all your discomfort.
For more information about the pain management treatments we offer or to schedule a consultation with one of our pain management doctors, call Chicagoland Pain Management Institute in Bolinbrook, IL at (630) 312-4505 or in Hinsdale, IL at (630) 856-6825 or use our convenient online appointment request form.
“I had suffered from chronic foot pain, undergone 10 foot surgeries, and taken pain medications on and off for 10 years before receiving the Axium™ Neurostimulator System. It has changed my life, I could not clean my house before without being in pain, and I was so uncomfortable that just having a blanket on my foot at night required a pain pill to sleep and now I can walk barefoot. I am not limping anymore, and I can wear shoes that I could not wear in the past. Even better, I am no longer taking pain medications for my foot. It’s amazing to have severe pain one moment and be nearly free of it the next.”
– Rosemarie W