There are at least 4,827 registered pain management specialists currently working in the US. Many of them work at pain management clinics, facilities dedicated to reducing all types of pain.
Doctors must refer their patients to a pain management clinic. Their reasons for doing so vary as widely as the possible causes of chronic pain.
Knowing what may cause you to need care at a pain management facility lets you prepare. It also helps you decide if the facility is the right choice for you.
Read on for 9 answers to the question, why is my doctor sending me to s pain management clinic?
To understand what a pain management clinic is, you be able to distinguish between the different types.
A specialized clinic focuses on one area of the body, such as the back or shoulders. An interdisciplinary clinic covers the entire body and incorporates the mind as well.
A block clinic provides specific medical services such as injections and nerve blockers. They provide relief to some chronic pain sufferers but aren’t as effective as other types of pain management clinics.
This variety of choices means that, with the proper research, you can find a pain management clinic to cover almost any need. Interdisciplinary clinics can also provide a wider range of services than a single doctor’s office.
Despite the high number of pain management specialists currently at work, there are strict requirements that must be met before becoming one.
A doctor must be an MD with a specialization in anesthesiology, physical rehab, psychiatry, and/or neurology. Only then will they earn the title and be able to work as a doctor at a pain management clinic.
Answering a question like what do pain management doctors do is simple. They’ll usually perform the same kind of tasks at a clinic as in their daily practice.
You can trust that the pain management doctors you see have the necessary level of experience. They see patients with similar symptoms every single day and whenever they work at a pain management clinic.
Intractable is a medical term that refers to a condition or set of symptoms that, despite the best efforts of all the doctors involved, doesn’t improve over time.
Medications, tests, and physical therapy are some of the first treatment methods a doctor may rely on, but they don’t always do enough to provide relief. A doctor may try several different treatments with little success.
Intractable conditions usually lead a doctor to refer you to a pain management clinic or other specialists. They use the knowledge of others to help manage difficult symptoms.
Pain management specialists are familiar with and better able to treat stubborn chronic conditions that don’t respond to traditional methods. This makes them an effective alternative for treating all types of intractable conditions that cause pain.
Almost any event that causes physical or psychological harm can be considered traumatic. Car accidents and surgeries are two of the most popular examples that may lead a doctor to refer a patient to a pain management clinic.
The busy streets of New York and New Jersey see car accidents every day. There were 31,966 in one year in the Bronx alone.
A car accident can lead to any number of serious issues including broken bones, psychological damage, and more. A doctor may refer you to a pain management clinic to speed up your recovery.
Surgery is also a form of trauma. Chronic pain in the affected area may result, especially if there are complications or the procedure is performed incorrectly.
Not everyone who experiences pain after a traumatic event will be referred to a pain management clinic. The decision is usually made when the discomfort is long-lasting, intractable, and/or difficult to diagnose.
Chronic pain usually lasts for at least three months. This makes it much more severe and difficult to manage than everyday aches and pains.
There are several causes of chronic pain, some of which are conditions that a patient must battle their entire life. Examples include arthritis, migraines, and all forms of cancer.
One doctor may not have the necessary specializations or tools to help you treat such a persistent condition. They may refer you to a pain clinic that specializes in treating it to provide you relief.
There are several causes for chronic pain, some of which are so similar that they get confused for one another. This makes it difficult to identify the right one.
What’s worse is that some conditions are only intractable because they’re misdiagnosed. A treatment plan based on the wrong condition won’t be able to provide the relief you need.
A pain management clinic doesn’t just provide medical services to lessen a patient’s pain. It also provides diagnostic services like tests and scans to help identify the source of their discomfort.
A variety of qualified experts usually work at a pain management clinic, and they have all the proper equipment to provide accurate results. This means that they can provide a more effective diagnosis than a single doctor’s office.
Once the true source of your pain has been identified, a pain management clinic can develop the proper treatment plan to address it. This could lead to faster relief and prevent you from taking medications or receiving treatments you don’t need.
Part of knowing why your doctor may send you to a pain management clinic is fully understanding what pain management is. This helps you know what to expect and prepare for any treatment methods they may recommend.
Pain management refers to any method you use to reduce the pain you feel. Medication is only one method of doing so, and a pain management clinic can provide other ways you may have never considered.
Examples of these alternative methods include physical and psychological therapy, chiropractic or acupuncture treatments, and stress-reducing strategies. A pain management clinic may recommend some or all of them for pain management.
Once a pain management doctor has given you the appropriate methods to manage your symptoms, they should also teach you how to work them into your daily routine. This way, you can continue to use them to cope healthily.
Pain management often a lifelong process of managing discomfort. The techniques you learn at a clinic can help you long after you check out, as long as you use them effectively.
A doctor may refer you to a pain management clinic if they expect you’re abusing the medications they’ve prescribed to manage your pain. They may also do so if the opioids aren’t providing relief and may be doing more harm than good.
As previously mentioned, pain management clinics provide alternative methods of coping with pain. These can reduce a patient’s dependence on opioids by providing alternative methods of dealing with chronic pain.
A pain management clinic can also help with any detox procedures you may require. They provide you with a support system to help you through the emotional difficulties of weaning off opioids.
Keep in mind that pain management clinics aren’t just for addicts. They can help anyone who wants to reduce their usage of opioids and/or requires different methods to manage their chronic pain.
Several types of pain are caused by chronic conditions that a medication or exercise regimen may not be able to relieve. In these instances, a doctor is likely to recommend surgery on the affected area.
50,000 Americans undergo surgery every year for back pain alone. Despite its popularity, only 5% of patients are candidates.
There are several reasons a patient may be considered high-risk for a particular surgery.
Age is one of the most important considerations, as it increases the likelihood of complications from any surgery. Medical history is another factor, as some medications or conditions make the procedure impossible or dangerous to perform.
Pain management is an effective alternative to surgery for all types of chronic pain. It can supplement physical therapy and other treatment methods by helping to loosen up the body and providing relief.
If your doctor feels your pain is severe enough to warrant surgery, discuss with them if other, more holistic methods may be a better choice. Pain management is one of the best ways to help high-risk candidates.
Pain management specialists are experts in their field. Some take this experience to a pain management clinic, a medical facility that focuses on diagnosing and reducing a patient’s pain.
There are several different types of clinics and reasons you may be referred to one. Work with your doctor to choose the right one for your needs.
Call 1-800-897-8440 today if you’re ready to find a pain management clinic with the tools and expertise to provide relief from your acute or chronic pain.
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