Clinical Science| Volume 26, ISSUE 3, P694-699, April 2023

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Peripheral Nerve Stimulation for Back Pain in Patients With Multiple Myeloma as Bridge Therapy to Radiation Treatment: A Case Series



      Patients with spinal lesions or vertebral compression fractures from multiple myeloma often present with back pain that restricts their ability to lie flat and prevents them from undergoing cancer treatment. Temporary, percutaneous peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) has been described for cancer pain secondary to oncologic surgery or neuropathy/radiculopathy from tumor invasion. The purpose of this case series is to show the use of PNS as an analgesic bridge therapy to treat myeloma-related back pain and allow patients to complete their course of radiation.

      Materials and Methods

      Temporary, percutaneous PNS was placed under fluoroscopic guidance for four patients with unremitting low back pain secondary to myelomatous spinal lesions. Before PNS, the patients had pain refractory to medical management and were unable to tolerate radiation mapping and treatment owing to low back pain while supine. Patients were followed with routine clinic visits to monitor pain and progression through cancer therapy. PNS was removed after approximately 60 days or after completion of radiation.


      This case series presents four successful cases of PNS to treat low back pain from myelomatous spinal lesions and associated vertebral compression fractures. PNS targeted the medial branch nerves to treat both nociceptive and neuropathic low back pain. All four patients successfully completed radiation therapy with PNS in place.


      PNS can effectively treat low back pain secondary to myeloma-related spinal lesions as a bridge therapy to radiation. The use of PNS is a promising option for back pain from other primary or metastatic tumors. Further research is needed into the use of PNS for cancer-related back pain.


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