Abstract The perception threshold for epidural spinal cord stimulation in chronic pain management was analyzed on 3923 testing data obtained from 136 implanted patients. The initial areas of paresthesiae due to stimulation were recorded and reported as the stimulation map according to the location of electrodes. Measurement of dorsal thickness of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) layer was obtained from 26 subjects using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The results indicate that the perception threshold is a function of the spinal level of the implanted electrodes, of the mediolateral position in the spinal canal and the contact separation of electrode. Differences in perception threshold at various vertebral levels are mainly due to varying depths of the dorsal CSF layer. The medially placed electrodes caudal to the mid-cervical levels have a higher perception threshold than more laterally placed ones. The electrodes at high and mid-cervical levels, however, have a smaller perception threshold if placed medially. The information obtained from this investigation has important implications for the design of a new-generation stimulation system and clinical application to maximize the longevity of the power source.