Living with pain is exhausting and can greatly impact your overall quality of life. It can be difficult finding any enjoyment in life when you are constantly inundated with pain that keeps you tired, distracted, and irritable. Fortunately, there are several effective ways to manage pain for the long-term. At Right Path Pain & Spine Center in Davenport, FL we specialize in helping you find the right method to eliminate your pain with interventional pain management treatments.
What Is the Difference Between Pain Management and Interventional Pain Management?
What is interventional pain management, and how is it any different from traditional pain management? This is one of the most common questions asked by patients seeking treatment at our clinic. For many, interventional pain therapy is a new concept that has not been offered as a means to manage chronic or acute pain. But there is a big difference between this type of pain management and traditional pain management.
Traditional Pain Management
Traditional pain management is the standard, run-of-the-mill medicinal treatments that have been used for centuries. Traditional pain management includes opioid treatments and over-the-counter medications, such as Advil or Tylenol, to manage pain flare-ups. Traditional pain management can also include cold and heat therapies as well as medicinal marijuana.
Essentially, traditional pain management is any type of treatment that does not invade the body in order to alleviate pain. It does not address the root of the problem or help the body deal better with pain messages. It simply covers them over.
Interventional Pain Management
Interventional pain medicine, on the other hand, does use minimally invasive techniques to address the pain cycle. The priority for interventional medicine is to intervene on the pain cycle and block the pain from transmitting through the body by using a minimally invasive method at the root source of the pain. Interventional medicine is an ideal treatment for both acute and chronic pain and can be used to alleviate even the most complex sources of pain.
There are a few common methods that are used in interventional pain medicine. Injection therapy in particular is the most common and simplest form of interventional pain therapy. However, localized out-patient treatments, physical therapy, and energy-based treatments are also commonly used to target the source of pain and disrupt the transmission of the pain cycle. The type of method used for your pain management will depend on where your pain is located and the severity of your pain.
What Can Interventional Pain Medicine Help With?
Interventional pain management techniques can help with a broad spectrum of pain, including pain associated with injuries and fibromyalgia. However, at our clinic, most of our patients seek assistance with one of two types of pain: back pain or joint pain. Let’s break down the common sources and treatments for each of these pain locations.
Common Sources of Back Pain
Back pain is one of the most pervasive, complex, and difficult to treat sources of pain in the body. This is because the spine is one of the epicenters for nerves that interpret and transmit pain sensations in our body, and that means figuring out which nerve is causing the pain can be a challenge. The most common causes of back pain include:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Fractured vertebrae
- Herniated discs
- Skeletal irregularities
Common Treatments for Back Pain
At our clinic, we have several treatments to address your back pain. We will help you determine which treatment is best for you depending on your type of pain, the exact location of your pain, and the underlying source for your pain. Our interventional pain treatments for back pain include:
Epidural Steroid Injection
You might be familiar with an epidural as something that is given to women who are in labor. An epidural steroid injection works in the same way to block the pain messages from the spine and reduce inflammation that is causing pain in the first place.
A nerve block is a type of injection that uses a numbing solution to control and block the nerves that are causing pain. A nerve block is one of the more diverse treatments available for patients, particularly patients with acute pain or who need help to identify the source of their pain.
A kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive technique that repairs fractured vertebrae in the spine with a specialized cement that restores the structural integrity of the spine. This is a treatment that can correct both the pain and the underlying cause for the pain, meaning this can be a long-term solution for chronic back pain.
A discectomy is a treatment that removes a portion of a herniated disk that is placing pressure on a nerve and causing pain. This treatment is perhaps one of the more common treatments for the spine and has a proven track record for alleviating both acute and chronic back pain.
Organic Disc Fusion
An organic disc fusion binds two discs on your spine together to support your vertebrae and is usually done with a bone graft that provides long-term support and relief from pain.
Spinal Cord Stimulator
Spinal cord stimulator is a high-tech solution for chronic back pain. Using a low flow of electricity, a spinal cord stimulator effectively mutes the nerves in your spine that are causing pain.
Common Sources of Joint Pain
Joint pain is another common source of both chronic and acute pain. Joint pain refers to any type of pain that radiates from the joints on the body, including joints in the jaw, neck, shoulders, arms, hands, hips, and legs. Joint pain is another type of pain that can be difficult to treat, largely due to the need for the joints to continue to be mobile. The most common causes of joint pain include:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
Common Treatments for Joint Pain
At our clinic, there are several treatments that can ease or eliminate your joint pain. We determine the right interventional pain medicine based on the cause of your joint pain, the location of the pain, and the severity of the pain. Our interventional joint pain techniques include:
Joint Steroid Injection
A joint steroid injection uses a cortisone steroid to relieve damage and pain on many joints of the body, including the elbows and knees. This steroid injection is a good temporary measure to relieve both acute and chronic pain.
Similar to a nerve block for the spine, a nerve block injection used on the joints simply numbs the nerves that are transmitting the pain. For the joints, a nerve block is a versatile treatment that can be used on any joint on the body, including the face.
Physical therapy is a method of pain management for the joints that teaches patients how to stretch and move for better mobilization. Physical therapy has been effective in relieving the pain from joints and resolving the sources of joint pain.
Radiofrequency treatments for joint pain utilize a small amount of gentle heat placed directly on the joints as a way of relieving the nerves that transmit pain. Radiofrequency treatments are ideal for patients with acute joint pain.
Stem Cell and Platelet-Rich Therapies
Both stem cell and PRP therapies are organic, natural ways of boosting the body’s natural regenerative abilities. The idea behind both of these therapies is to provide your body with the tools it needs to heal the cause of joint pain while also alleviating pain in the interim.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is the Difference Between Acute Pain and Chronic Pain?
Many patients come into our clinic with a pain diagnosis and find themselves wondering if there is a difference between acute and chronic pain. The answer is yes, there is a distinct difference between the two, and it has to do with time.
Acute pain is pain that lasts for about three to six months at most, such as the pain you might have following an injury that is still healing. Chronic pain, on the other hand, is long-term pain that can last for years and is most commonly associated with diseases such as arthritis or fibromyalgia.
Is Interventional Pain Management Safe?
Yes. All the interventional pain therapies offered at our clinic are proven safe and effective for patients. These are trusted therapies that can alleviate pain from multiple sources and virtually anywhere on the body. Our interventional pain medicines are low-risk, high-reward therapies that are compatible with a wide variety of pain sources for the joints and back.
Is Interventional Pain Management Right for All Patients?
Interventional pain medicine is an ideal solution for many patients who are seeking alternatives for traditional pain management, particularly pain management that uses potentially addicting substances. Interventional pain therapies are appropriate for the majority of patients who seek treatment at our clinic. Here are a few ways we determine which treatments are right for you.
Your first step for seeking treatment at our clinic will be to attend a consultation appointment. At the consultation we will discuss the type of pain you have, the degree of your pain, and any diagnoses you might have. Your consultation will also include gathering your general medical history, any drug allergies you have, and any surgeries you have had in the past. We will examine the areas where you feel pain and establish your expectations for treatment.
Depending on the type of pain you have and the source of your pain, you will likely have multiple treatment options available to choose from. We help you narrow down your treatment options based on whether you have acute or chronic pain, the pain location, and your primary diagnosis.
Your results and the way you respond to treatment are out top priority. As a rule of thumb, we generally recommend patients begin with the least invasive techniques and move to other treatment options if the first treatment does not produce optimal results. We monitor your progress in response to the pain management techniques and help you establish a treatment plan that allows you to live pain-free continuously.
Who Are Good Candidates for Interventional Pain Management?
Most prospective patients seeking alternative treatments for pain are good candidates. We determine patient qualification based on your consultation and your diagnosis. Good candidates include patients who do not want complex surgeries and who would prefer different treatment options than those provided with traditional pain management. You may be a good candidate if you suffer from:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Herniated discs
- Rheumatoid arthritis
Relieve Your Pain With Interventional Pain Management!
You don’t have to grin and bear it. Living with your pain is not your only option, and neither are traditional pain management techniques. If you think you might be ready to explore the benefits of interventional pain management, don’t wait any longer. Relief is right around the corner. Contact Right Path Pain & Spine Center in Davenport, FL to schedule your consultation today!