TENS units are covered for the treatment of chronic intractable pain that has been present for at least three months or more, and in some cases for acute post-operative pain.
Not all types of pain can be treated with a TENS unit. TENS units have been proven ineffective in treating headaches, visceral abdominal pain, pelvic pain, TMJ pain, and most recently lower back pain. Therefore Medicare will not pay for the device or supplies when used to treat these conditions.
For chronic pain sufferers that have had persistent pain for three or more months in duration, Medicare will pay for a one or two month trial rental to determine if this device will help or alleviate the chronic pain. You must return to your physician or healthcare provider 30-60 days after your initial evaluation to discuss how the therapy is working and to authorize the purchase of this equipment.
For acute, post-operative pain sufferers, Medicare will consider rental payment for a maximum of 30 days. Any duration longer than that Medicare will deny as not medically necessary.
Your supplier cannot deliver this product to you without a written order or certificate of medical necessity from your doctor or healthcare provider, nor can they get the documentation at a later date because if they do, Medicare can never make payment for those products to you or your supplier. So please be patient with your supplier while they collect the required documentation from your physician or healthcare provider.
** Some or all of the products in this category may be subject to competitive bidding depending on where you live. Ask your supplier for details.