19. Spinal Cord Stimulation in Failed Back Surgery Syndrome

  1. Sam Eljamel2 and
  2. Konstantin V. Slavin3
  1. Gail Gillespie and
  2. Pravin Dandegaonkar

Published Online: 19 JUL 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118346396.ch19

Neurostimulation: Principles and Practice

Neurostimulation: Principles and Practice

How to Cite

Gillespie, G. and Dandegaonkar, P. (2013) Spinal Cord Stimulation in Failed Back Surgery Syndrome, in Neurostimulation: Principles and Practice (eds S. Eljamel and K. V. Slavin), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118346396.ch19

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Centre for Neurosciences, Ninewells Hospital & Medical School, Dundee, Scotland, UK

  2. 3

    Department of Neurosurgery, University of Illinois at Chicago. Chicago, Illinois, USA

Author Information

  1. Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Dundee, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 JUL 2013
  2. Published Print: 19 AUG 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781118346358

Online ISBN: 9781118346396



  • failed back surgery syndrome (FBSS);
  • invasive treatment;
  • neurostimulation;
  • spinal cord stimulation (SCS)


Failed back (or neck) surgery syndrome (FBSS/FNSS) refers to chronic backleg or neck‐arm pain that persists or recurs after spinal surgery for conditions such as disc herniation, lumbar stenosis, or spinal instability. It is also known as post‐laminectomy syndrome or failed back syndrome. The treatment of FBSS is often interdisciplinary and based on individual patient's needs. Apart from conventional medical management, invasive treatment options including spinal cord stimulation (SCS) are important treatment considerations. FBSS remains a challenging clinical entity for both patients and clinicians. SCS therapy is efficacious in terms of improved pain scores, improved quality of life, and, despite initial high cost, has proven to be cost effective in the long term. With advancements in SCS systems to improve safety and efficacy, SCS has now moved ahead of long‐term opioid therapy, spinal reoperations, and intrathecal drug delivery and should be considered alongside conventional medical treatment for patients with FBSS.