A prospective study of BurstDR™ spinal cord stimulation for non-operated discogenic low back pain

Martijn R Mons*, Kenneth B Chapman, Chris Terwiel, Elbert A Joosten, Jan-Willem Kallewaard

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


INTRODUCTION: Chronic discogenic low back pain (CD-LBP) is caused by degeneration of the disc due to trauma to the annulus or by unprovoked degeneration, resulting in chronic pain. Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) employing the BurstDR™ waveform has been shown to be an effective treatment in a variety of chronic pain conditions. The aim of this prospective case study was to determine the effect of BurstDR™ SCS on pain relief, disability, and patient satisfaction in a population with CD-LBP.

METHODS: Seventeen subjects with CD-LBP received a SCS trial with BurstDR™ stimulation. Patients with >50% pain relief after a trial period of 2 weeks were permanently implanted (n = 15). Patients then rated LBP and leg pain using the numeric rating scale (NRS), Oswestry disability index (ODI), patient global impression of change (PGIC), EQ-5D quality of life, and painDETECT for neuropathic pain at baseline following trial, 3, 6, and 12 months after permanent implantation.

RESULTS: Treatment with BurstDR™ SCS resulted in significant reduction of LBP as the NRS was reduced from 71.7 ± 7.3 at baseline to 42.5 ± 18.1 at 12 months. Average pain relief at 12 months was 42.5%. In patients with leg pain (n = 8), pain was significantly reduced from 66.9 ± 8.2 to 11.7 ± 10.4 at 12 months. PainDETECT scores for neuropathic pain significantly reduced from 18.9 ± 4.8 at baseline, and 14.8 ± 3.2 at 12 months. Baseline ODI score significantly reduced from 41.2 ± 12.8 to 25.8 ± 8.6 at 12 months. PGIC scores remained low from 2.6 ± 1.6 at 3 months, 2.5 ± 1.0 at 6 months, and 2.5 ± 1.3 at 12 months. EQ-5D-5L rates remained constant from baseline 56.10 ± 23.9 to 68.6 ± 12.9 at 12 months.

CONCLUSION: BurstDR™ SCS resulted in significant reduction of back pain, leg pain, and quality of life in patients with CD-LBP and decreased the level of disability and generated positive patient satisfaction scores.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-241
Number of pages8
JournalPain Practice
Issue number3
Early online date14 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


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