Are you one of the 50 million Americans living with chronic pain?
If so, you know how debilitating a condition everyday discomfort can be. And, you’ve probably tried just about everything to get well again.
In many cases, you just won’t get better on your own. And, if your pain is persistent, it might be time to call in a specialist.
Not sure where to get started? No worries – this is your article.
Keep reading to learn more about pain management, and get the answers to your top questions, like what does a pain management doctor do.
What Is Chronic Pain Management?
This medical term refers to the treatment of pain that lasts three to six months or more.
Chronic pain can take place after an illness, injury, or even an operation. And, if left untreated, it can persist – in some cases even indefinitely.
The most common conditions treated by pain management specialists include the following:
- Lower back pain
- Knee pain
- Head pain and migraine headaches
- Hip pain
- Neck pain
- Nerve pain
It’s important to remember that not every patient feels the same way. You might experience sensations ranging from mild to severe – and your pain level might be different every day. But that doesn’t make what you’re experiencing any less serious!
What Does a Pain Management Doctor Do?
Pain management specialists follow a series of key steps to help you resolve your discomfort. In most cases, this process begins with a pain evaluation and diagnosis.
First, your doctor will examine you thoroughly and try to determine exactly what is going on. Imaging, lab work, and other tests may be required for a proper diagnosis. Then, they will spend time evaluating your pain to try and determine which treatment plan is best.
Your doctor might then prescribe prescription or natural pain medication to help you get your physical discomfort back under control. They might also suggest additional treatments such as acupuncture, massage, or chiropractic care.
Pain doctors can also work to help coordinate your entire medical team. This allows for better patient advocacy and can prevent dangerous drug interactions, as well.
Intervention and Ongoing Care
If your pain management doctor determines that you need medical intervention like anti-inflammatory injections or nerve treatments, they will likely perform them directly.
Your pain specialist might also create an ongoing care plan with regular visits to their office. This may include small or non-invasive medical treatments or visits to other doctors who can help with prescription medications, therapy, and more.
Most importantly, you’ll continue checking in with your pain doctor regularly, monitoring your discomfort and other symptoms, and conducting further follow-up evaluations when needed.
Get Well Soon!
Now that we’ve answered your big questions, like what does a pain management doctor do, you’re probably feeling empowered to make your first appointment. That’s great news! Reading this article might have been the very first step in your healing process.
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