Neurosurgeon responds to spinal cord stimulator investigation: 3 insights

Mackenzie Garrity -   Print  | Email

An AP News and NBC News investigation found more than 80,000 incidents of injuries caused by spinal cord stimulators since 2008.

While there were injury reports, neurosurgeon Joseph Christiano, MD, defended his use of the stimulators with News 4 Tucson.

Here are three insights:

1. Dr. Christiano told the news outlet he performs between 150 and 200 spinal cord stimulation procedures annually.

2. While the investigation highlighted dangers in the device, Dr. Christiano told patients not to worry. "Lookat where we get our devices and how that process occurs to get them from manufacturer to patient," Dr. Christiano told News 4 Tucson. "On the other hand, it is also important to balance that with what is effective for patients and make sure the statistics are not over- or under-represented."

3. The neurosurgeon reported 85 percent of the spinal cord stimulators he implants are successful. "The key there is we have to make sure we are selecting patients for the right reasons or for the right problems," he told the news outlet.

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