Things to Know About a Pain Management Doctor
A pain management doctor is a medical specialist who uses a variety of treatments to help their patients find relief from chronic pain. These treatments can include medication, physical therapy, and relaxation techniques. In addition, these doctors often work with other medical specialists to develop a comprehensive treatment plan for their patients. They usually have a background in anaesthesia or another medical speciality. This allows them to better understand how pain works and how to treat it effectively.
What type of pain does a pain management doctor treat?
Pain management doctors may treat a wide variety of conditions, from acute pain (such as pain from an injury) to chronic pain (such as pain from arthritis). In addition, pain management doctors may treat both physical and psychological causes of pain. The goal of the treatment is to help the patient manage their pain and live as normal a life as possible. Pain management doctors use a variety of treatments, including medication, physical therapy, and surgery.
Here are some of the disorders that may lead to pain due to tissue injury:
● Spinal cord injury
● Multiple sclerosis
● Post-stroke pain
● Pain caused by nervous system disorders
● Rheumatoid arthritis caused due to autoimmune reaction in small joints, like wrists and fingers
● Osteoarthritis caused due to wear and tear of large joints, such as hips and knees.
● Back pain
● Neck pain
● Mixed pain disorders
● Neuropathy or nerve pain caused by HIV, shingles, or diabetes
Background of a pain management doctor
Pain management doctors must complete nine years of medical school and obtain a medical license. They also need to complete additional training in anesthesiology, neurology, or physical medicine and rehabilitation. Additionally, they should also complete another year in training where they learn different techniques for treating pain. It is only after they complete so many years of training that they would receive a certification from the American Board of Pain Medicine.
Diverse treatment approach
Depending on the cause and severity of the pain, treatment may start with a primary care doctor who may provide basic pain medications or recommend physical therapy. Specialists who may be involved in the treatment of pain include anesthesiologists, neurologists, physiatrists, and surgeons.
The first line of treatment usually involves something relatively simple and non-invasive, such as over-the-counter pain medication or heat therapy. If these methods are not effective, however, the doctor may use Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulators wherein low-voltage electrical current is delivered to the affected area.
The second line of treatment may involve radiofrequency ablation (RFA) or viscosupplementation. RFA is a procedure that uses heat to destroy damaged tissue, while viscosupplementation involves injecting a gel-like substance into the joint to lubricate and cushion it. These procedures can be effective in relieving pain and improving joint function, but they are typically only used when first-line treatments have failed.
The third line of treatment is an option for patients who have not had success with more conservative approaches to pain management. These procedures involve implanting a device that helps to control pain. Commonly used devices include pain pumps and spinal cord stimulators. Pain pumps deliver medication directly to the site of pain, and spinal cord stimulators work by electrical stimulation of the nerves.
How to find a good pain management doctor
When it comes to pain management, finding the right doctor is essential. The best pain management doctors are those who take a comprehensive approach to treatment. They will carefully assess the cause of your pain and develop a personalized treatment plan. Additionally, they will regularly monitor your progress and make adjustments to your treatment plan as needed. Another key quality of a good pain management doctor is excellent communication skills. They will take the time to listen to your concerns and explain things in a way that you can understand.