Pain Medication Management in Las Vegas and Henderson NV
Pain medication management is an effective means of controlling a patient’s pain. For most people, pain is an emotional experience of rather unpleasant sensations. The goal of pain medicine management is to allow patients to work and participate in usual activities, while improving range of motion, mobility, and function.
What is the difference between acute and chronic pain?
Acute pain arises suddenly and is related to tissue injury, disease, and inflammation. Chronic pain persists for more than six months, and is often resistant to clinical treatments and medical procedures.
What conditions can be treated with pain medication management?
Common painful disorders treated at the pain center include:
- Chronic back pain
- Central pain syndrome
- Head and face pain
- Cancer pain
- Reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD)
- Neuropathic (nerve) pain
- Myofascial pain
- Spinal stenosis
- Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)
How does the doctor measure my pain?
There is no diagnostic tests used to measure pain intensity, and no instrument can locate a patient’s pain. The doctor relies on the patient’s report of his or her pain, including duration, location, and type. Testing is used to diagnose the underlying condition that causes pain.
What diagnostic tests are used by the pain management specialist?
Testing is done using computed tomography (CT), electromyography (EMG), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, x-rays, and nerve condition studies.
What medications are used for pain treatment?
Patients with chronic conditions often experience pain. The pain management specialist will use numerous different medications for pain relief, and sometimes, a combination of drugs works bests. Options include:
- Acetaminophen – Tylenol is used to treat mild chronic pain due to its anti-inflammatory effects. When used as prescribed, acetaminophen is safe, and effective, but when taken in excess, it can be damaging to the liver.
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) – These medicines are used for many types of arthritis, as well as inflammation pain caused by tendonitis and bursitis. However, NSAIDs are not as effective for chronic pain of neuropathic nature.
- Corticosteroids – These are powerful anti-inflammatory agents used on a short-term basis. The pain management specialist offers a long-acting corticosteroid for serious inflammatory conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis.
- Anticonvulsants – Medications used for neuropathic pain include Lyrica, Neurontin, and Tegretol. These anticonvulsant agents alter nerve function, stop pain, and interfere with pain signal transmission.
- Antidepressants – When used along with other pain medicines, antidepressants control chronic pain by altering how the brain perceives the discomfort and painful sensations. Commonly used agents include tricyclic antidepressants (nortriptyline and amitriptyline), serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) (Vibryd, Cymbalta, and Effexor), and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIS) (Celexa, Prozac, and Paxil).
- Topical medications – This includes the Lidoderm patch (topical lidocaine delivery), as well as capsaicin, menthol, and camphor.
- Opioids – These drugs are highly addictive, but quite effective for pain relief. When taken as prescribed, they are safe. Controlled by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), examples include hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine, fentanyl, and codeine.
What guidelines does the pain specialist follow?
At the pain medication management facility, our doctors follow strict guidelines for the treatment of pain. The main features of our protocol include:
- A comprehensive medical history
- Detailed physical examination and evaluation of the patient
- Informed consent agreement
- Written treatment plan
- Maintenance of records
- Record review periodically
- Controlled pain medicine agreement
- Random urine drug testing