Occipital peripheral nerve stimulation is an interventional pain management therapy that provides beneficial results in the treatment of refractory chronic occipital neuralgia. Herein we present a first-of-its-kind case study of a patient with neurofibromatosis type 1 and bilateral occipital neuralgia treated with occipital peripheral nerve stimulation.
A 42-year-old Caucasian woman presented with bilateral occipital neuralgia refractory to various conventional treatments, and she was referred for possible treatment with occipital peripheral nerve stimulation. She was found to be a suitable candidate for the procedure, and she underwent implantation of two octapolar stimulating leads and a rechargeable, programmable, implantable generator. The intensity, severity, and frequency of her symptoms resolved by more than 80%, but an infection developed at the implantation site two months after the procedure that required explantation and reimplantation of new stimulating leads three months later. To date she continues to experience symptom resolution of more than 60%.
These results demonstrate the significance of peripheral nerve stimulation in the management of refractory occipital neuralgias in patients with neurofibromatosis type 1 and the possible role of neurofibromata in the development of occipital neuralgia in these patients.