The American Academy of Pain Medicine estimates that more than 76.2 million people are living with chronic pain. That means chronic pain impacts more people than diabetes, coronary heart disease, and cancer combined.
The impact of chronic pain is very real. When you are in pain, your heart rate increases, your blood pressure rises and you breathe faster. Constant discomfort can cause you to become sedentary or gain weight. You could injure other parts of the body by limping or moving awkwardly to try to decrease the pain. Chronic pain can also lead to loss of employment and income. Pain can also lead to depression, fear, isolation, and anxiety.
At Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center, we can help. We have an entire team devoted to helping people living with chronic pain.
Acute or chronic pain?
There are three forms of pain we address:
A recent surgery, injury or medical illness can cause acute pain. Often, this pain gets better in a short amount of time, with the right kind of treatment. Sometimes, doctors can handle acute pain during routine appointments. But when your acute pain is serious and your doctor can't find an adequate solution, a pain management specialist might be called in to help.
The pain can be due to cancer surgery or treatment procedures, including radiation therapy and chemotherapy, or the tumor itself. Effective pain management is an essential part of comprehensive cancer care. Cancer pain is another condition that can be managed by a pain management specialist.
If your pain persists after the healing process should be over, you might have chronic pain. This is a form of pain that can't be touched by your current treatment plan, and sometimes, it gets worse with time. Pain management specialists can assist with chronic pain issues just like this.
Meet our pain management team
We have two specialists on our pain management team who can help you:
- Juan-Diego Harris, MD, board-certified pain management specialist.
- Ross Dickstein, MD, board-certified pain management specialist.
- Aathi Thiyaga, MD, board-certified pain management specialist.
Our team is at the forefront of pain medicine. They explore the latest interventional, pharmacological and alternative approaches for patients with acute, chronic and cancer-related pain.
Because chronic pain is a complex problem, our team takes a multidisciplinary approach to devise patient treatment plans. We often work with other doctors and departments within the Claxton-Hepburn system in order to build the best treatment program for you.
Pain management treatments
During an initial visit, Dr. Harris or Dr. Dickstein will evaluate and diagnose your condition and build a customized treatment program for you. That plan might include:
- Alternative, holistic approaches to pain management.
- Facet/medial branch block/diagnostic injections.
- Facet radiofrequency ablation of all spinal levels.
- Insertion of temporary and permanent epidurals.
- Lumbar, thoracic and cervical epidural steroid injections under fluoroscopic guidance.
- Myofascial trigger point injections.
- Other peripheral nerve blocks.
- Pain syndrome and bupivacaine injections under fluoroscopic guidance.
- Placement of spinal cord stimulators.
- Sympathetic blocks.
- Synovial fluid replacement therapy.
- Use of botulism toxin for management of a variety of myofascial pain conditions.
- Use of radiofrequency for the management of other pain syndromes.
Addressing your pain
The pain management program at Claxton-Hepburn offers hope and a supportive environment for people suffering from debilitating pain. Some patients experience a complete end to pain, but this level of success is not possible for everyone. Patients whose pain cannot be eliminated often find their pain significantly reduced.
Patients are seen on a physician referral basis only. That means you'll need to visit with your doctor first before you make an appointment to see our team.