Living with Chronic Pain

4 Types of Pain Clinics

Source: WebMD

Treatment of chronic pain is highly individualized. People with chronic pain may need to see several health care providers who specialize in different medical disciplines in order to receive comprehensive treatment. Pain management clinics are often a good option for people with chronic pain, as they typically include health care professionals who specialize in different medical disciplines at the same location.

Generally, four main types of pain clinics are available: surgical centers, interventional-based clinics, long-term clinics, and rehabilitation clinics. Although pain management clinics tend to specialize in one approach to pain management, this does not mean they do not offer any other therapies. Understanding the different approaches of pain management clinics helps narrow down which type of clinic will provide the most appropriate and effective treatment.

Surgical centers

Surgical centers mostly focus on neck and back pain. They specialize in spinal surgeries, including spinal fusions, discectomies, and laminectomies. While surgery is their specialty, oftentimes, surgery is not the only treatment needed for chronic pain. Some surgical centers also offer complementary therapies and comprehensive pain management care.

Interventional-based pain clinics

Interventional-based pain clinics specialize in pain management treatments, such as epidural steroid injections, nerve burning procedures, and nerve blocks. Anesthesiologists or physiatrists may also perform procedures to implant medical devices, such as spinal cord stimulators or pain pumps.

Long-term medicinal pain clinics

Long-term pain clinics typically take a predominantly medication-based approach to chronic pain relief. Medications, such as opioid pain relievers, are prescribed for chronic pain management. Unfortunately, this type of practice has come under scrutiny due to people without chronic pain abusing the system.

Rehabilitation clinics

Pain rehabilitation clinics focus on therapies to cope with pain on a daily basis. Different types of treatment are recommended to treat the cause and effect of chronic pain. A combination of therapies, including physical therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, exercise, and non-narcotic pain relievers, is typically used. Rehabilitation clinics help individuals with chronic pain achieve the best quality of life possible.

Additional source: Institute for Chronic Pain

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