Interventional spine and joint wellness incorporate injections and minimally invasive procedures to relieve pain and improve function. Dr. Albert Singh focuses on using innovation to improve pain and function. Patients with new injuries and chronic pain conditions may benefit from diagnosis and treatment by our specialists.
Medication alone may not be enough to manage certain kinds of pain. Some medicines are more effective when they are combined with other methods of treatment. In some cases, the patient’s pain condition may respond to treatment instead of medication. In fact, for some patients, certain therapies may eventually replace the need for taking any pain medicine, or less of it, over time. Here are just some of the available treatments being used successfully to treat pain patients.
Injection treatments – Local anesthetics (such as Novocain®), with or without cortisone-like medicines, can be injected around nerve roots and into muscles or joints. These medicines reduce swelling, irritation, muscle spasms and abnormal nerve activity that can cause pain.
Nerve blocks – Often a group of nerves, called a plexus or ganglion, cause pain to a specific organ or body region. These nerve groups can be blocked with local anesthetics. If successful, another solution that numbs the nerves can then be injected.
Physical therapy – The physician may suggest an exercise program, tailored for you, to increase your daily function and decrease your pain. Other treatments may include whirlpool therapy, ultrasound, and deep-muscle massage.
Electrical stimulation – Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is the most common form of electrical stimulation used in pain management. It is not painful and does not require needles or medicine. TENS consists of a small, battery-operated device that can diminish pain by stimulating nerve fibers through the skin.
Psychological support– Many patients who are in pain feel the emotional effects of suffering along with the physical aspects of pain. These may include feelings of anger, sadness, hopelessness or despair. In addition, pain can alter one’s personality, disrupt sleep, interfere with work and relationships, and often have a profound effect on family members. Support and counseling from a psychiatrist or psychologist, combined with a comprehensive pain treatment program, may be needed to help you manage your condition. These trained professionals also can teach you additional self-help therapies such as relaxation training or biofeedback to relieve pain, lessen muscle spasms, and reduce stress.
Biofeedback and/or relaxation therapy- This is often used as a therapy to help patients manage their pain. The patient will be referred to a licensed psychologist that has a background working with chronic pain.
Surgery – When necessary, surgical treatment may be recommended. In rare instances when severe pain has not responded to other treatments and procedures, surgery on certain nerves can be done to give the patient some relief and allow them to resume near-normal activities. Usually, all other avenues of treatment are tried before surgery is considered. Spinal cord stimulator (SCS) implantation, cryotherapy, permanent epidural or intrathecal catheter placement, radiofrequency, discography, neurolytic procedures, kyphoplasty, biacuplasty and spinal endoscopy (epiduroscopy), are some of the various interventional therapies that are used as treatments for chronic pain.
Regenerative Medicine – Regenerative medicine is a game-changing area of medicine with the potential to fully heal damaged tissues and organs, offering solutions and hope for people who have conditions that today are beyond repair. Regenerative medicine holds the promise of definitive, affordable health care solutions that heal the body from within. Stem cells are a key component of regenerative medicine and have the ability to develop — through a process called differentiation — into many different types of cells, such as skin cells, brain cells, lung cells and so on. This provides new ways to treat and manage chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart failure, and degenerative nerve, bone, and joint conditions.