A pain management clinic is where doctors specialize in treating chronic pain. They focus on physical, behavioral, and psychological treatments to relieve pain and help patients regain their quality of life.
When you visit a pain management clinic, your doctor will ask many questions about your symptoms and medical history. This will help them understand your condition better. They will also review past diagnostic studies (X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans).
Unlike general practitioners, pain management doctors have extensive training in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating chronic pain. They work primarily with patients who experience pain for at least three months.
A doctor’s first step is to get a complete medical history from the patient. This includes asking about the pain’s intensity, duration, and location.
The physician may also ask about any other symptoms or conditions associated with the pain. This can include depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues that might be causing the pain or contributing to it.
The pain doctor then develops a treatment plan with a care team. This will usually involve a mix of non-pharmacological therapies and pharmacological interventions. These include physical rehabilitation, cognitive behavioral therapy, acupuncture, a weight loss regimen, yoga, and other complementary therapies.
During a pain management clinic St Augustine FL visit, your doctor will take a detailed history of your symptoms and perform a physical exam. They may also order laboratory or imaging tests to help them make a diagnosis.
A good pain doctor will listen to your concerns with a compassionate ear and customize a treatment plan that will work for you. This may include a combination of medications, lifestyle changes, and psychological therapy.
The physical examination process starts with you telling your doctor, in your words, how you are feeling and what is bothering you. The doctor then looks for cues and clues to your pain, such as where it is located and how it feels – dull, achy, pressure, or sharp.
The doctor will then perform a neurological exam designed to assess the nerves and muscles in the body. They will look for any reflexes or abnormal movements. They will also check for balance and strength.
Depending on your diagnosis and the severity of your pain, your doctor may prescribe one or more medications. Your physician may also recommend an exercise program, physical therapy, or other measures to help you cope with pain and improve your quality of life.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, are commonly used to relieve pain. They work by blocking chemicals that cause inflammation and fever.
Acetaminophen is another pain medication that can be taken over the counter or with a prescription. It works by blocking a chemical called prostaglandin, which causes inflammation and swelling.
Opioids, such as codeine, morphine, and oxycodone, are also often prescribed for severe or cancer-related pain. They reduce inflammation and fever, but they can be very addictive.
Other pain medicines include neuromodulation treatments, which use low-voltage electrical pulses to block pain signals sent to your brain. These effectively treat chronic or neuropathic pain, such as postherpetic neuralgia and phantom limb pain.
A good pain management clinic will offer a variety of treatments. These can range from physical therapy to medication and may include a TENS machine.
Your doctor will get to know you, your medical history, and how your pain affects your daily life. They will ask about your pain’s location, frequency, and intensity. They will also try to find out if it gets better or worse with certain activities.
They will also examine your prior X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs. This will help them diagnose what is causing your pain and which types of pain treatment will most likely work for you.
You may need to attend the clinic regularly, once a week, for several weeks. This will give your doctor time to monitor your progress and make any changes.