Some research indicates that alternative therapies can reduce the need for pain medication and more invasive treatments. Physiotherapy for pain focuses on strengthening and flexibility as well as improving overall posture and movement. We work with our patients to tailor physical therapy plans that address the specific causes of their chronic pain. For example, physical therapy for chronic neck pain may be very different from a physical therapy plan for a patient suffering from fibromyalgia. We at the Pain Clinic of Monterey Bay work with our patients to identify and implement the best treatment plan possible.
Interventional pain management options seek to relieve chronic pain through minimally-invasive procedures. Epidural steroid injections, radiofrequency nerve ablations, cryotherapy, botulinum toxin injections are available and part of our comprehensive pain management. These techniques aim to address the pain generators at the source of the chronic pain and can often be repeated when necessary.
Neuromodulation for pain management is an advanced treatment option that involves using technology to change the nervous system. This can be done through targeting the nervous system with electrical signals (spinal cord stimulation) or with medication targeted directly at the spinal nerves (targeted drug delivery system or pain pump). These devices allow patients with severe intractable pain to better control their pain without taking oral or systemic opioid medications like oxycontin, morphine or methadone. Spinal cord stimulation, peripheral nerve stimulation, and pain pumps are more advanced minimally invasive techniques designed to disrupt the transmission of pain signals.
More can be learned about neuromodulation by watching this UCTV lecture by Dr. Poree.
Ketamine for Chronic Pain
Ketamine is a medication used to treat a variety of illnesses, including most commonly major depression. As a treatment for chronic pain, it quickly produces changes in the neurons of the brain, reversing neural damage due to stress and depression, and reducing inflammation and cortisol levels as well. Ketamine therapy, administered by qualified medical professionals, is now helping patients with various types of chronic pain to rapidly experience relief of physical symptoms, improving both mood and function – and producing hope.
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