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Schmerz. 2013 Aug;27(4):401-8. doi: 10.1007/s00482-013-1326-x.

[Development of epidural spinal cord stimulation. Fortieth anniversary of the first implantation in Germany].

[Article in German]

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Neurochirurgische Universitätsklinik, Universitätsklinikum Schleswig-Hostein, Campus Lübeck, Ratzeburger Allee 160, 23538, Lübeck, Deutschland.


Spinal cord stimulation is nowadays an established therapy for various neuropathic and vasculopathic pain syndromes after more conservative measures have failed. However, 40 years ago, only 5 years after the first worldwide implantation in the US, this therapy was promoted in Germany. In 1972, the first devices were implanted in the Departments of Neurosurgery at the Universities Hannover and Freiburg. These pioneering efforts and the establishment of the therapy are intimately associated with three names: Jörg-Ulrich Krainick, Uwe Thoden, and Wolfhard Winkelmüller. Nowadays about 1700 spinal cord stimulation systems are implanted annually in Germany. The development of spinal cord stimulation from the beginnings up to now taking into special consideration the early years in Germany are presented.

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