Conventional treatment for pain usually involves prescription medication, physical therapy, and surgery if pain persists or worsens. Millions of Americans use opioids to manage pain, which is not a good treatment, because it only works to mask the pain and has highly addictive properties. The misuse of opioids claimed 49,860 lives in 2019. It is also an economic burden, costing the US $78.5 billion a year. With the opioid epidemic raging, members of the healthcare community are offering alternative pain relief methods.
Why Try Alternative Treatments?
Pain can be debilitating, and can severely impact your quality of life. If you suffer from chronic pain and are dependent on prescription drugs, you may want to look into alternative pain treatments. Alternative treatments have a very low risk of complications. Also, alternative methods of treatment usually do not involve the use of medication, which means there is no risk of addiction and overuse. Alternative treatments are also administered by a doctor or licensed specialist, which means they are safe and effective.
Studies show that, when part of a comprehensive pain management program, alternative therapies not only relieve pain but also enhance the effectiveness of other treatments.
Alternatives to prescription medication include acupuncture, massage therapy, chiropractic care, injection therapy, viscosupplementation, nerve blocks, and radiofrequency ablation. These treatments are used far and wide to bring pain relief. Below is a little more on some alternative treatments.
With injection therapy, the doctor injects a powerful combination of steroids and anesthetic near the pain area. The anesthetic provides immediate relief from pain. As it wears off, the steroid medication begins to work, reducing swelling and inflammation. Patients can experience long-term relief from pain for up to six months with a single injection. Neck, back, shoulder, elbow, knee, buttock, thigh, groin, hand, and foot and ankle pain that is due to facet joint syndrome, arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, or spinal stenosis can be treated with injection therapy. Doctors who offer this treatment may use ultrasound to guide the injection to the exact spot where it is needed.
Another form of alternative treatment is nerve blocks, which also serve as a diagnostic tool. With it, the doctor finds the nerve where the pain signals are coming from. Afterward, they use radiofrequency ablation to destroy the nerve with heat.
Knee arthritis patients may experience relief from viscosupplementation. It is a shot of hyaluronic acid to provide lubrication to the joints, which helps with joint stiffness and improves range of motion.
Where to Get Alternative Treatments?
If you are interested in learning more about alternative treatments for pain relief, speak with a specialist who uses these methods to treat patients like you.
Pain Management Doctor in St. Peters & O’Fallon, MO
Dr. Brian Meek is an orthopedic doctor at Advanced Bone & Joint, which is a leading orthopedic practice in Missouri. Dr. Meek is fellowship-trained in pain management. Dr. Meek treats patients with joint pain, neuropathy, and cancer-related pain.
You will receive the latest and highest quality alternative pain treatments for your condition under our care. To make an appointment with Dr. Meek, call (636) 229-4222 or use our online request form.