What is Pain Management and What to Expect
A pain management physician has special training in evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of all different types of painful conditions. Pain is a wide spectrum of disorders including acute pain, chronic pain and cancer pain. Pain can also arise from many different reasons such as surgery, injury, nerve damage and metabolic problems such as diabetes. Occasionally, pain can be the problem all by itself, without any obvious cause at all. As the field of medicine learns more about the complexities of pain, it has become more important to have physicians with specialized knowledge and skills to treat these conditions. The pain management physician has an in-depth knowledge of the physiology of pain, the ability to evaluate patients with complicated pain problems, an understanding of specialized tests for diagnosing painful conditions, appropriate prescribing of medications for many different pain problems, and the skills to perform many types of interventional procedures. In addition, the broad variety of treatments available to treat pain is growing rapidly. With the increasing number of new and complex medications, techniques, and technologies becoming available, the pain management physician is uniquely trained to use this new knowledge safely and effectively to help their patients. They also play an important role in coordinating additional care such as physical therapy and rehabilitation therapy. Many types of chronic pain may require a complex treatment plan, as well as specialized interventional techniques.