Medical Minute: DePaul Hospital offering pain management treatment to reduce opioid use

Medical Minute

ST. LOUIS – Pain management specialists are experienced medical professionals working together toward a common goal – to relieve you from your pain and regain your quality of life with safe, responsible pain management. 

Dr. Christian Oliver, a pain management physician at SSM Health DePaul Hospital’s Pain Management Center, says treatment plans are tailored to each individual patient and can range from basic injections to minimally invasive nerve procedures and spinal stimulation.

The approach is often multidisciplinary and aims to tackle all patient factors that contribute to their pain, and in many cases, decreasing or eliminating reliance on opioids. Epidural steroid injection, also referred to as an epidural block, can be used to treat neck, mid-back, lower back pain, and radiating pain. Pain medication is injected into the epidural space around your spinal cord and spinal nerves, stopping the nerves from transmitting a pain signal.

Other options include trigger point injections around extremely painful areas of muscle, specifically in the arms, legs, lower back, and neck. Dr. Oliver also used radiofrequency denervation, heat energy used to alter small sensory nerves around the spinal joints that are causing pain. 

Dr. Oliver also offers discography, a pressure gauge measuring the pressure of the spinal discs to identify the source of pain, then contrast dye is injected to determine the shape of the disc and therefore the source of persistent spinal pain. Physical therapy can also be offered to treat, heal and prevent injuries by relieving pain, promoting healing, and restoring function and movement.

To find out more about pain management options, click here.

The SSM Health Medical Minute airs Wednesdays on News 11 at 7 p.m. and FOX 2 News at 9 p.m.

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