InterStim® Therapy Overview
InterStim® Therapy is a minimally-invasive procedure that corrects the miscommunication between the pelvic floor and the brain that may be responsible for bladder and bowel control problems.
InterStim® works by delivering a small electrical impulse that blocks out those inappropriate nerve signals, letting your bladder communicate with your brain without that interference, therefore restoring normal communication. And it’s thought to work in this same way for bowel control.
InterStim® Therapy Test
The most remarkable part of InterStim® is that we can first do a quick test to figure out if the therapy may work for you long-term. The test can be done in about 5 minutes at our clinic and it allows you to test-drive the therapy for 3 – 4 days to see if it works for you.
Most patients tell us the test itself is quick and easy. No incisions are required. The nerves that control bladder and bowel function are located just above the tip of the tailbone in an area called the sacrum. Dr. Taylor views the sacrum under x-ray, numbs it with a local anesthetic, then watches himself precisely place two small temporary wires right next to the nerves. Those wires are connected to a small stimulator you wear in an elastic belt for 3 – 4 days. If your symptoms improve by at least 50% or more during this test period you will likely do well with the long term therapy.
InterStim® Therapy Implant
InterStim® long-term therapy is delivered by a small battery and wire placed under the skin in a 20 to 30-minute outpatient procedure. Dr. Taylor performs this procedure in the Medicare-certified surgical suite located at his clinic. The anesthesia provider uses local anesthetic and IV sedation to ensure patient comfort, and patients don’t have to go completely to sleep for this procedure.
The long-term wire is placed in the same place the temporary wire was located, right next to the sacral nerves that are located just above the tip of the tailbone. The small battery is placed about an inch under the skin, in the upper part of the buttocks – below your beltline, but above where you sit. That’s it, a small battery and wire. Everything is hidden under the skin and no one knows it’s there, but it helps you get long-term relief from your bladder and bowel symptoms.
Since it’s outpatient and we do it right in our facility, patients go home within an hour or so with minimal recovery. Most of our patients are back to doing their normal activities within a day or so. Over 250,000 patients worldwide have been treated with this long-term therapy and well over a thousand of our patients have benefited from it themselves. InterStim® has truly changed the way we treat bladder and bowel control problems.
Schedule a consult with Dr. Taylor today to talk about how InterStim® could help you.