SCS Implant & DVLA
November 25, 2016 at 5:57 pm #42982
I was wondering if anyone might have any experience or advice.
I have suffered with chronic back pain for the last 17 years, and last week had my Nevro SCS fitted. The question I have is do I need to inform the DVLA? I am 35 with no other health issues. The implant is in my spine. I have nerve damage on my spinal cord so take 90mg of gabapentin daily and codiene & nefopam as emergency rescue meds on very bad days, which I don’t obviously drive when I have taken them.
Does anyone know what I need to do?
Thanks for your helpNovember 25, 2016 at 8:30 pm #42983
Yes absolutely. they won’t stop you from driving providing the medication doesn’t affect you. There are certain conditions they MUST be informed about . If yours isn’t one of them they won’t do anything. Even if it is they’d only want confirmation that you are safe to drive. If you don’t tell them and were to have an accident, first there’d be a £1000 fine and 2nd, your insurers may refuse to pay up. YOu should tell them too. It shoudl not affect your premium.
I’m taking opiates and told both with no problems at all.
Also, for my own peace of mind ( and to cover myself just in case) , 2 years ago I took an assessment by the Institute of Advanced motorists just to make sure someone independent thought my reactions were still ok. It’s often hard to judge yourself. They were doing free assessments at the time. It wasn’t a test as such, just someone sitting with you while you drive. Of course you have to be open to any criticism LOL. I was told I indicate too much and don’t take enough notice of advance warning signs like schools and hospitals and I was too slow on part of a dual carriageway but then I was looking for a turning.November 25, 2016 at 8:39 pm #42984
Thanks for the feedback and advice. Yes absolutely best to inform them but I was confused as it only mentioned cranial implants. I knew about the car insurance company which is what kind of started tbis all because it’s due for renewal on 4th December.
Did you fill in a form of ring them up?November 30, 2016 at 11:32 am #43029
I will be having a Nevro SCS implant in the new year. Can’t wait for some much needed pain relief. How are you doing?November 30, 2016 at 4:58 pm #43031
DVLA will almost certainly just say that it’s your decision on whether your driving is affected but it’s best to play safe.December 31, 2016 at 2:14 pm #43239
I was told by the hospital that because you are not supposed to drive with the stimulation switched on that I didn’t need to contact anyone. I even have high frequency programs where I dont feel any stimulation sensation I still do not drive with it switched on. The advice is always switch off when driving. In terms of medication I think we all know the impact rescue med on ability to drive. I take a cocktail of drugs and opioid daily that doesn’t affect my.ability to drive if I take rescue meds then I am usually in the situation where driving wouldn’t even cross my mind. Hope this helps DavidJanuary 1, 2017 at 11:18 am #43244
Hi David, is it the Nevro HF10 you have? Yes I was also told to switch it off when driving. I am 6 weeks post op and have a check up next week so hopefully will be told if I can start driving again. The pain relief is great, and I am starting this year as well as I have felt in a long time.
Dalhousie- good luck with your implant surgery.January 1, 2017 at 9:07 pm #43249
Yes, good luck with your implant, Dalhousie!
Annie xJanuary 2, 2017 at 12:12 pm #43253
Hi Lady N,
I have a high freq Nevro SCS with high cervical leads. Great isn’t it! Mine is in 3 years now, and I use it all the time, and don’t turn it off to drive, in fact I rarely turn it off at all. I informed my insurance company, but they didn’t know what it was! My consultant said it was fine to drive as you don’t get any altered sensation. I think the rules re driving are for low frequency stim as they do alter sensation and can cause sudden limb movement (I think)
If you are turning it on and off numerous times during the day, it will lessen the ‘build up’ effect of the stimulation. I’ve had no problems driving (although wasn’t able to drive for months after the surgery to ensure that the leads scarred in properly).
Good luck with your implant, great new research supporting high frequency stimulation as the way forward. We are lucky to get it.
T 🙂January 4, 2017 at 10:48 pm #43274
Just so I’ve got this straight, patients with high frequency Nevro where it’s ok to drive you still have to inform the DVLA and yr car insurance company. I don’t have a car currently but hope to purchase one after my successful Nevro implant. Thx. Can’t wait. So excited. Been cancelled today for the op 😨 But I’m definitely on my way!!!March 1, 2017 at 12:36 am #43584
Hi everyone eorry late replying to you dalhousie but i have Boston Scientific. When i was given the high frequency from the Boston rep I asked could I drive with it switched on and i was told in theory but they were having to tell patients that it was not authorised or liscensed to be used whilst driving. Following a debate in another site im going to ring the UK Boston office to get clarification about the DVLA. If it is not sonething that is not used whilst driving then still do not understand why the DVLA or insurance would need to know about it. If its off it is off and its only like not having it fitted.
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