About Us

Feelings of pain can range from mild and occasional to severe and constant. Acute pain begins suddenly and is usually sharp in quality. It serves as a warning of disease or a threat to the body. Acute pain may be caused by many events or circumstances, including surgery, broken bones, etc. Unrelieved acute pain may lead to chronic pain, which may persist even after the original injury has healed. Pain signals remain active in the nervous system for weeks, months, or years and can have lasting physical effects. Tense muscles, limited mobility, a lack of energy, and changes in appetite can occur, in addition to emotional effects, such as depression, anger, anxiety, and fear of re-injury. Such effects may hinder a person's ability to return to normal work or leisure activities. We feel each individual is the best judge of his or her own pain. Our medical staff takes a multidisciplinary approach in addressing your pain management concerns, and we work with you to determine the best treatment options. Depending upon your diagnosis, pain may be treated in a number of ways. After a comprehensive review of the patient's history and current health, a care plan is developed that may include a wide array of interventional pain management procedures & techniques such as: See our Patient Education page.

Diagnostic Discography

When a patient is experiencing pain, minimally-invasive therapeutic techniques can be used to try to treat the area that is thought to be causing the pain. However, these techniques can be ineffective if more drastic methods are necessary to fix the problem, or if the pain generator has not been accurately identified. A discography is a diagnostic tool used to gain a better understanding of whether discs are responsible for the pain the patient is feeling and, if so, which disc or discs in particular have become problematic. Once this procedure has been performed, doctors will have a better idea of where the problem is and will be able to more accurately predict the outcome of surgery.

During a discography, the patient is given local anesthetic and a sedative that calms the patient, but does not make them unconscious. A needle is guided via x-ray to a disc in the back. Liquid dye is injected through the needle and into the disc. CT scans are taken that track the movement of the dye. Depending on where the dye goes, the doctors can determine whether the disc is torn, bulged, or scarred. Because it can be difficult to ascertain whether the disc is the primary pain generator solely by its appearance, the patient is also asked to report whether they feel any pain when the liquid enters the disc. This process is repeated for each disc that is suspected to be problematic, based on the patient’s symptoms.

Because spine surgeries are risky and tend to have long recovery times, it is good idea to make sure that the outcome will be worth the risks involved. Diagnostic discography is a useful tool that helps establish what the outcomes of different surgeries will be.

Side effects and outcomes are unique to each patient and will be discussed before any treatment options are prescribed.