Dr. Ronald Linehan, MD, of Lancaster, Ohio has successfully implanted an adaptive neurostimulator in a patient that previously suffered from debilitating chronic back pain.
Dr. Linehan is among the first in central Ohio to implant the adaptive neurostimulator. The adaptive technology is new and was recently approved by U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in November of 2011. A study conducted in January of 2012 and published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information concluded that 86.5% of patients experienced improved pain relief with the new adaptive neurostimulator.
Emily Smith, a patient of Dr. Linehan’s, had suffered from debilitating pain following multiple back surgeries. Emily received the Medtronic AdaptiveStim™ with RestoreSensor™ implant in early April of 2012. Having lived with the device for just a few weeks, she is exuberant about the results. “I was down to where I couldn’t do anything,” she said. “I couldn’t turn over in bed, I couldn’t stand for any time. I couldn’t go to the grocery. I couldn’t go to church. My husband and I prayed for something to help me. This (adaptive neurostimulator) has been so much of a life-changer for me. So many things I couldn’t do before, I can do now.”
The new neurostimulator technology, developed by Medtronic, is the first and only chronic pain treatment that harnesses motion sensor technology found in smart phones and computer gaming systems to provide effective pain relief—and convenience—by automatically adapting stimulation levels to the needs of a patient with chronic back and/or leg pain.
A neurostimulator system consists of an implantable medical device similar to a pacemaker. The device interrupts pain signals and prevents them from reaching the brain. The basic technology has existed for years and the treatment has become a mainstay of chronic pain management. However, a change in body position (e.g., sitting up or lying down) can result in an increase or decrease in the intensity of stimulation as a patient’s spinal cord moves closer or further away from the stimulation site. As a result, patients needed to make frequent manual adjustments to their stimulation levels as they moved via a handheld patient programmer, which could lead to discomfort or noncompliance due to inconvenience.
The Medtronic AdaptiveStim with RestoreSensor reduces the need for manual programming changes by automatically adapting stimulation levels by recognizing and remembering the correlation between a change in body position and the level of stimulation needed. It also records and stores the frequency of posture changes, providing objective feedback to clinicians to help them understand how a patient’s individual stimulation requirements are changing over time.
About Dr. Linehan
Ron Linehan, M.D. graduated from the University of Tennessee College of Medicine and completed his internship at the Jewish Hospital in Cincinnati. After completing his anesthesiology residency at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and Children’s Hospital Medical Center, he practiced pain management in Kentucky and Tennessee before moving to Lancaster, Ohio in 1998.
Dr. Linehan holds Board-certification in Anesthesiology with a Subspecialty Certification in Pain Management and is also certified by the American Board of Pain Medicine. The American Board of Anesthesiology subspecialty certification in pain management is the only pain management certification recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties.
Dr. Linehan is qualified to treat all regions of the spine, including the neck (cervical), mid-spine (thoracic), lower back (lumbar), pelvic girdle and tailbone areas (sacrum and coccyx). He is certified in spinal cord stimulator placement, percutaneous discectomy, vertebroplasty, and radio frequency ablation.
Dr. Linehan has Precision Pain Care offices in Lancaster and Canal Winchester. In addition to pain management, Dr. Linehan practices general anesthesiology at Fairfield Medical Center in Lancaster. He also volunteers with Operation Smile, a non-profit organization providing reconstructive facial surgery for children, and with the International Cardiac Care Foundation where he provides anesthesiology services for heart surgery patients in developing countries.
National Center for Biotechnology Information Report:
Sensor-driven position-adaptive spinal cord stimulator
Medtronic AdaptiveStim™ with RestoreSensor™ FDA Approval News
Precision Pain Care website: