View Full Version : New to TENS
Nicole in ATL
06-08-2004, 08:52 AM
I have been doing worse the past couple of months and need pain meds more and more, so decided to give TENS a try. Any feedback is much appreciated!!! I have some questions...
1) How long did you leave the TENS on at first and then did you build up after that?
2) Is it possible to use it too long?
3) After consistent use, did you notice more improvement with time?
4) Did it make you worse or did you have any bad side effects?
5) Were do you put the pads?
Thanks so much ladies. I hope the TENS works for me.
I wish you luck.
Do you own a tens machine?
Nicole in ATL
06-09-2004, 02:56 AM
I just got my TENS this week. I ordered it on-line after getting a script from the pain clinic. The pain clinic docs knew very little about TENS for IC though. That's why I'd love to hear how it works for others.
06-09-2004, 04:09 PM
The TENS unit works pretty good for me. I am currently doing biofeedback and using my TENS. I was told that there is two places that you can put the electrodes for IC. One is your lower abdomen over the bladder area and the other is your lower back on each side of your spine.
I don't think that you can use it too long. I was having a bad day the other day and had mine on for 5 1/2 hours. I had no adverse reaction from it.
I hope this helps.
I dug my T.E.N.S unit out before I came to work tonight.
My husband had called from Italy, and I was telling him that I was going to give it a try. He knew right where it was!
Nicole in ATL
06-10-2004, 03:11 AM
Thanks for your reply Trinka! Another spot I've read about to put the electrodes is on the inside of the ankle, below the ankle bones. There are several spots there that supposedly correspond with the sacral nerves, which control feeling in pelvic area.
I still haven't tried my TENS yet b/c I've had a very busy week and I have to sit down and out it together. But I plan to start this weekend.
Let me know how the TENS works for you Blue.
Thanks so much for your replies,
06-10-2004, 07:40 AM
Hi , I use a TENS.. My uro told me to put a pad or two on the inside of calf close to the shin on inside part of leg..I also use pads on bladder and on lower back..
It certainly helps with the lower back pain but not sure it does much for my bladder..but I will try anything when in pain..
Nicole in ATL
06-10-2004, 08:21 AM
Thanks for replying Pam! How long have you tried the TENS? I've read that with chronic pain it can take 3-4 months of use to see full benefits.
06-10-2004, 11:33 AM
I have used it more for back pain and it helped me handle long periods of sitting. It takes my mind of the pain and that is what I want... I just left it on for as long as I wanted. I only use it off and on when flareing and back pain, which for me seem to go hand and hand...This last flare lasted about a month so used it several times during that time.. It helped my back and come to think of it this flare has ended so maybe it did help the bladder..
I tried the T.E.N.S unit where Trinka suggested. It was great while I had it on. I went an hour and a half without the urge to go potty. As soon as I took it off, WOW, I had to go. I had no pain while wearing it either. I'm going to use it from now on! It's better than always taking pain medication. I just can't afford to be foggy brained at work.
06-11-2004, 08:22 AM
That is exactly how it is with me. While I am using it I don't have as much pain or urgency but when I take it off it all comes back right away. That is why if I am having a bad day I will wear it for several hours.
None of my doctors have said I was wearing it too long. I don't think that you can. They prefer me to do this instead of taking a lot of narcotics.
Although, when my IC gets extremely bad the TENS doesn't work for me anymore. Then it is narcotic time.
Maybe if we use the TENS 24/7 we won't have to suffer as much. Wishful thinking.
Would someone please come up with a cure!
06-11-2004, 09:40 AM
I used TENS too long, severely irritated my skin & ended up allergic to the tape & electrodes. Please take skin care very seriously & don't put the electrodes on irritated skin. I tried to use TENS for 2 years 24/7, except when my skin was really bad. I'm still paying for it today with adhesive allergies.
For me, TENS worked right away -- the first night I could tell the difference. My response did not change over time. I put the electrodes over my bladder & on the inside of my left shin. It did not make me worse or have any bad effects except for the allergies mentioned above.
Nicole in ATL
06-14-2004, 09:14 AM
Thanks so much for your replies. Another TENS question: do you turn up the unit until you can feel it? Does it still work if it is low enough that you can't feel it?
I tried the TENS this weekend on my abdomen and it did help with the pain. I'm going to keep using it, next on my ankle to see if that works too. I wear the oxytrol patch and so my skin is sometimes a little irritated on my abdomen, so it would be nice if it worked on my ankle.
Thanks for the advise about skin care Rjyoon. I'm sorry you have adhesive allergies now. I'm sure that is a pain.
06-14-2004, 09:27 AM
Hi. I have to say that I am very surprised that TENS are being used for IC therapy. I am pretty newly diagnosed. The thing that is kinda funny to me is that my mom used to be a saleswoman for TENS about 18 years ago when they were new to the market. She mainly sold them for physical therapy use. She gave me one for my period cycles every month! Wish I had it now. Anyway, they work great when you have the electrodes in the right place.
I suggest that you do turn it up until you feel it and kep it as high as you can for as long as you can. The TENS is supposed to "block" the message to your brain that you have any pain in that area.
Nicole in ATL
06-15-2004, 09:50 AM
Thanks for your reply Jen! When I was reading about TENS, I saw info about using it for menstrual pain and even labor!
So far the TENS helps with the pain, while I have it on. It seems like a lot of trial and error with the pad placement.
06-15-2004, 10:27 AM
Yah placing pads is a little funny.. got to watch out for the hairs :) I have a scar on stomach and I don't place the pad there.--- That skin is way to sensitive...Like you say it is trial and error..
07-11-2004, 05:36 PM
I don't have one yet but am going to ask my Dr. for one.
When I had EXTREMELY successful acupuncture, he put the needles - several in each side of my spine right above the tailbone, then hooked it up to a tens unit. I was in remission for months - only out of it because I had to move.
Thanks for reminding me about it! I'll ask her for one on Wednesday when I have my appointment.
07-12-2004, 01:08 AM
Thanks for the word of caution...I only use it when needed and for at the most an hour at a time.
07-12-2004, 04:15 PM
I agree with the suggestion to experiment to see how little can help. When I did the acupuncture, I only went once a week for 45 minutes and was hooked up during that time. After about a month of sessions, I began to experience almost complete relief of symptoms in between those 45 minute a week sessions. That was all I needed. If I got a TENS unit, I'd try the same thing.
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