Dorsal Root Ganglion (DRG) Therapy

The DRG in DRG Stimulation refers to the Dorsal Root Ganglion, also sometimes known as the posterior root ganglion. The Dorsal Root Ganglion lies at the posterior root of each spinal nerve. Pain signals travel from the lower limbs to the brain, on the way they must pass through the dorsal root ganglion. If you suffer from neuropathic chronic pain, a new type of therapy called dorsal root ganglion stimulation, or DRG stimulation, could help you find minimally-invasive and highly-effective pain relief. It is most effective for patients with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS).

In a study evaluating specific types of difficult-to-treat chronic pain of the lower extremities, DRG patients had an average of 81.4% reduction in their pain at 12 months.*

For DRG stimulation, a pain specialist implants a small pulse generator under your skin, with four outward leads. These leads are then attached to the pulse generator and the painful area on your body. You then control the activation of small electrical impulses to these affected, painful areas. For patients with neuropathic pain, this can actually block the painful stimuli and provide very effective pain relief without medications. It also reduces the amount of paresthesia, or pins-and-needles feelings, that are associated with similar forms of pain relief.

The idea of DRG stimulation is nearly identical to traditional Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS), with one very important difference – rather than placing the leads in a general region of the spinal cord, DRG stimulation targets the specific regions of the cord that are transmitting the pain and shuts down those painful signals directly by placing the leads DIRECTLY OVER THE DRG’s. The FDA clinical trial (ACCURATE Study) showed that electrically stimulating the ganglion offers patients better and more targeted pain relief from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS).

The following short video explains what DRG stimulation is and how it works.

If you’re suffering from nerve damage pain, complex regional pain syndrome, other forms of painful nerve disorders, then DRG may be very helpful at reducing your pain. Please call us at (541) 386-9500 to learn more about how this new pain management technology is changing lives. Our staff at Columbia Pain Management looks forward to hearing from you and discussing how neuromodulation may help you.

Resources

Pain Interrupted. Life Transformed – DRG Therapy Patient Education Brochure (PDF)
Accurate Clinical Study – Fact Sheet for Patients (PDF)
Looking Forward to the Future: A Physician’s DRG Experience (Video)
Living Life Again: Jenifer’s Chronic Pain Story (Video)
A Step Towards the Future: Kam’s Chronic Pain Story (Video)

*Levy, R., & Deer, T. (2015, December). A prospective, randomized, multi-center, controlled clinical trial to assess the safety and efficacy of the spinal modulation Axium™ Neurostimulator System in the treatment of chronic pain. Presented at the meeting of the North American Neuromodulation Society (NANS), Las Vegas, NV.

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