This medical video looks into the new medical advancement on spinal cord implants.
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Jennifer Mathews: Back pain can be debilitating and relentless for many patients. Carol Thompson: It would get to the point where sitting for a long period of time was painful. Gerald Dolan: I was walking crooked and I had pains down both legs and everything else. Jennifer Mathews: Dr. Howard Levy says back pain that persists even after multiple surgeries can leave patients desperate for help. Dr. Howard Levy: Patients that I see are patients that have had surgery and have persistent pain, and we're trying to come up with some reason, some solution to help them with the pain. Jennifer Mathews: That solution maybe spinal cord stimulation. Your body feels pain through messages sent to the brain. In spinal cord stimulation, a device is implanted into the lower back and wires are run into the spinal canal. It blocks pain signals from reaching the brain using electrical stimulation. Dr. Howard Levy: The spinal cord stimulator can be placed, put back, and the patient can be back on his feet in several days without the long recovery that's required from back surgery. Jennifer Mathews: Patients can turn the device on or off with the touch of a magnet. Gerald Dolan had the device implanted after five back surgeries failed to resolve his pain. Gerald Dolan: I'd probably be in a wheelchair, but with this, I have a life right now that I can do almost anything I want to. Jennifer Mathews: Dr. Levy say, that's the reaction from many of his patients. Dr. Howard Levy: If it works, it's wonderful thing for patients to tell you that their pain feels much better. Jennifer Mathews: This is Jennifer Mathews reporting.