Trident Health System February 07, 2013

North Charleston, S.C. – On Wednesday January 9, Trident Medical Center became the first hospital in the country to perform a Precision Spectra Spinal Cord Stimulator (SCS) implant. The surgery was performed by neurosurgeon Dr. Jason Highsmith, who is one of just 10 surgeons nationwide trained in implanting this device.

The device, which was created by Boston Scientific, relieves pain by delivering electrical pulses to the spinal cord. Instead of feeling pain, patients experience a tingling sensation. Individuals control the level of pulses sent by a handheld remote control, giving them the ability to change the amount of pulses depending on the level of discomfort they are feeling.

“This device is the most technologically advanced implant available today for the control of chronic pain,” said Dr. Highsmith.

Until now, SCS systems have offered a maximum of 16 contacts and two lead ports, with each lead port allowing the placement of one lead. The contact is the area on the lead that provides stimulation to the patient. The lead is a catheter that is threaded through a needle or inserted through a laminotomy to the desired level in the spine through the lead port.

By providing 32 contacts and four lead ports—twice that of any other SCS system—the Precision Spectra System offers more coverage of the spinal cord for the management of chronic pain. The Precision Spectra System is the world’s first and only SCS system with 32 contacts and 32 dedicated power sources.

“Trident Health strives to remain on the cutting edge of technology. We are excited to be chosen as the location for the first implantation of the Spectra IPG in the nation. This is a great addition to the wide variety of spinal procedures that are offered at Trident Medical Center,” said Donna Daws, Trident Medical Center Director of Surgical Services.