Category: Conditions

Cervical radiculopathy

The vertebrae, which protect the spinal cord and spinal nerves, through daily activities experience normal wear-and-tear. Sometimes this causes slight impingement of nerves, in turn causing spinal nerve inflammation and shooting pain down to the hand. Radiating neck pain Neck pain that shoots down the arm into some (not all) fingers can be due to cervical…

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Lumbar facet arthropathy

Axial low back pain is often due to arthritic pain of spine facet joints, which sustain wear-and-tear from daily activities. The joints can hurt and cause pain across the low back. Ablating the small “medial branch nerve endings” to the facets can help kick-start recovery. Axial low back pain Axial low back pain — involving only the back…

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Treating pain at nerve-body interface

Small sensory nerves throughout the body gather information & interact with the body directly. This nerve-body interface underlies many diseases. In chronic pain, nerves cause “neurogenic inflammation” by activating blood vessels, skin, & immune cells. This is the site of action of many pain treatments. Key nerve-body interfaces Neural-vascular: Sensory nerves open blood vessels. This…

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Stylohyoid (Eagle’s) syndrome

Entrapment of nerves by the “stylohyoid complex” is an uncommon cause of neuropathic jaw & neck pain. This can be due to congenitally long styloid processes, or scarring after surgery or traumatic injury. The stylohyoid complex connects the hyoid bone — important in swallowing & tongue movement — to the head. Made of tough cartilage & bone, the complex…

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Medication overuse headache

Headache medications taken too regularly can paradoxically cause a new headache, called medication overuse headache (MOH), that is constant, over & above the primary headache. The treatment is to stop the medications & treat the primary headache. Central sensitization Using rescue headache medications every day changes the balance of neurochemistry (in particular serotonin) in the…

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Sympathetic blocks for pain

The sympathetic nervous system lets the brain control the organs to maintain overall balance of body systems. In many chronic pain conditions, it worsens inflammation & pain; in some, they even become pathologic. Sympathetic blocks help reduce these effects. Sympathetically Maintained Pain Sympathetic nerves release norepinephrine and: Sensitize painful nerve endings Widen arteries causing redness…

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Painful scar neuroma

Sometimes long after surgical wounds have healed, the scars remain painful due to sensitized nerve endings in the scars. While visually obvious, painful scar can be surprisingly hard to diagnose, because the pain is perceived to be coming from another “referred” location. Scar Pain Referral Patterns Midline Neck scar refers to the neck & head, often…

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Early CRPS diagnosis & treatment

CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) affects hands or feet after injuries or surgeries. The burning pain of CRPS is much harder to treat if not found early. CRPS detection & treatment should START NOW. A referral should be made to a board-certified Pain Medicine specialist, who can perform advanced procedures such as ketamine infusion, bisphosphonate…

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Complete surgical pain management

While opioids are often necessary to treat surgical pain, some patients end up feeling “stuck” on high-dose opioids. A complete pain management plan before, during, & after surgeries can minimize the need of opioids. Most patients need opioids only up to 4 weeks, rarely up to 12 weeks. Get large printed posters on Etsy for…

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