For people who suffer chronic pain, finding long-term or permanent relief from pain is a constant struggle. Even after exploring medical and non-medical therapies, the results on pain outlook are sometimes minimal and not rewarding. In such cases, interventional pain management can sometimes be a useful alternative when all else fails. It is an emerging approach to treating pain, and this article highlights key things to know about it.
Understanding Interventional Pain Management
Interventional pain management is aimed at diagnosing and treating chronic pain. It utilizes a multidisciplinary approach, allowing a team of healthcare professionals to collaborate in providing a full range of treatments for patients suffering from chronic pain.
Your team will include a number of healthcare professionals in the field of anesthesiology, psychiatry, and physical and occupational therapy.
The goal is to find a combination of methods that help your pain levels. You may even work with a nutritionist for dieting as such lifestyle modifications are sometimes impactful on pain outlook.
Interventional pain management is helpful for a wide range of pain-related disorders, including complex and central pain syndromes, arthritis, facial and musculoskeletal pain, herniated discs and more others.
Types of Interventional Pain Management
The following are minimally invasive procedures common with interventional pain management;
- Discography using a CT scan or X-ray to discover the source of your pain.
- Pulsed Radiofrequency Neurotomy which helps to prevent your spinal nerves from transmitting pain signals
- Implantation of surgical pumps that allow pain medication to hit the precise spot where the pain originates.
- Nucleoplasty involving tissue removal from a disc to ease the pressure.
- Rhizotomy surgeries in which the nerves that send pain signals to the brain are targeted using heated electrodes to “switch off” the signals.
- Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS) which involves the use of electrical impulses to prevent the brain from processing pain.
- Nerve block injections are used to find the spinal nerve root that triggers the pain. These are also helpful for reducing inflammation
What to Expect
- Before you begin interventional pain management, your specialist will carry out a comprehensive evaluation of your pain condition, and this requires thorough analysis. Doing this enables your pain specialists to create a solid and detailed treatment plan that is tailored specifically to your needs.
- Your initial meeting with an interventional pain specialist will involve a consultation and a comprehensive physical examination at your initial consultation. You will need to discuss your medical history with your doctors. If you can, take along any x-rays or test reports that can provide insight on your pain.
- It is vital to be completely open about the location of your pain, its intensity and any other other symptoms you are presenting. This way, your physician understands how best to work with you
- You will need to let the doctor know about any additional treatments or pain management plans that you have tried as well as any current medications you are on, pain related or not. In addition to this, you will need to share alternative therapies you have tried, be it massages or herbs.
If you or a loved one are suffering from chronic pain and are yet to find a means for extended relief, do consider seeing a pain specialist.
Lakeshore Pain and Spine Center provides a comprehensive and empathetic approach to interventional pain management. Let us work with you to restore relief and a sense of normalcy. Contact us here.