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Pain Center - Pain Management

Targeting the Source of the Pain

Although new treatments take many forms, advances in neuromodulation—a highly specialized technology that can change the function of the nervous system with electricity—is proven to be extremely effective.
 
The use of electricity for pain management actually dates to 17 BC when the Romans put patients with migraine headaches into pools stocked with electric fish. The idea was that a "zap" from the fish would alleviate the headache.
 
In the modern version of that ancient practice, two electrodes placed into the epidural space can stimulate the spinal cord to block the transmission of pain. This technique can mitigate persistent, as well as nerve-related, pain in the arms and legs. Certain types of lower back and abdominal pain also respond to neuromodulation. For disc-related pain, two needles are inserted and an electrode is injected at the source of the pain to create a heat field and decompress the disc.
 

Improving the Quality of Life

If patients respond well to medication, electricity, or a combination of both, quality of life can be further improved through another pain management advancement: intrathecal pumps, implanted and controlled by the patient to provide a continuous source of pain relief. These pumps can be especially beneficial to patients with terminal illnesses who would rather focus on other aspects of their lives.
 
The Sibley Pain Center’s approach will involve a comprehensive evaluation of each patient to determine the best treatment possible, and this may include referrals to other specialists. "What we hope to provide is an individualized plan for everyone and connect each patient with the right provider, whether it’s neurosurgery, orthopedic surgery, neurology, physical therapy, occupational therapy or psychological services," said Dr. Desai.

The Sibley Pain Center treats the following conditions and disorders:

Disorders of the Spine
  • Degenerative disc disease; cervical, thoracic and lumbar 
  • Radiculopathy; cervical, thoracic and lumbar 
  • Whiplash-associated disorders 
  • Cervical and lumbar strain 
  • Facet disease; cervical, thoracic and lumbar 
  • Sacroiliac joint pain
 
Nerve-related Pain (Neuropathic Pain)
  • Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (also known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy) 
  • Peripheral or diabetic neuropathy 
  • Phantom limb pain/post-amputation pain 
  • HIV-related pain 
  • Peripheral nerve injury 
  • Central pain syndromes (post-stroke pain, post-spinal cord injury pain) 
  • Post-herpetic neuralgia and herpes zoster 
  • Headaches (occipital neuralgia, migraines, tension headache, cluster headache) 
  • Facial pain – TMJ, neuromas (trauma), atypical facial pain
  • Musculoskeletal Pain
  • Myofascial Pain Syndrome 
  • Chest wall pain 
  • Piriformis Syndrome 
  • Arthritis, joint pain
 
Abdominal/Pelvic Pain
 
Cancer Pain
 
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