Jacob R. Caylor, MD, DABA, DABPM

Pain medicine has changed quite a bit over the last 20 years. We’re in a much more advanced space now, with new therapies becoming available every day. However, these new options create challenges for both the patient and the provider. Which therapy will best serve each unique case? As these therapies become more and more complex, how do doctors teach patients about the reasons why some choices are better than others? There are also patients who have received treatment but are unclear why certain decisions were made. 

This blog is designed to educate our patients and to bridge the gap of knowledge between what our physicians and advanced practice providers now know and what patients may currently believe.

Along with this education comes the ability to advocate—for yourself as well as your family members—so when you’re faced with a decision, you can make the best decision.

Etiologies of Pain: Cause and Effect

Many people in pain management—patients and providers alike—believe in this paradigm:

A caused B, therefore fixing A will lead to the resolution of B

In this paradigm, A is generally some type of injury or event, and B is either pain or change in function. Maybe something has been twisted or overused. This then leads to feeling pain. But the assumption here is that the problem is one-dimensional and there’s nothing else that may be contributing to the problem.

By the time they reach us, most patients have tried some sort of other therapy. They may have tried home care, with rest, ice, or heat. They may have been evaluated by their primary care physician or a chiropractor. From there, they may have tried over-the-counter medications or therapy, but they’ve continued to experience pain or disability. After all of this, they’re sent to a spine or pain specialist in order to diagnose and treat the chronic pain. 

The journey from the initial onset of the pain to a visit to PSA will often take about three to six months. Along the way, patients may learn to adapt to their pain and change the way they walk, sit, stand, lift, or do any number of other normal activities. Now, we’re not just talking about the initial injury or cause and the resulting pain, but all of the behaviors that have developed as a result.

Diagnosing the Problem

Pain medicine is a field. This means that those of us in the field don’t just focus on the treatment, we’re just as concerned with the diagnosis.

There are roughly 46 possible causes for lower back pain. In order to accurately diagnose—and therefore treat—any case, we have to look at the patient’s entire story: How did this story evolve? How does the patient describe the pain?

Along with the patient’s story, we conduct an examination and take a close look at the body: How does it move? How do the tendons and the musculature feel? Plus, we conduct studies like CT scans and MRIs.

From the story, examination, and study, we can begin to create a picture of the problem. But even then, with all of this work done, there may still be several causes for the pain. At this point, we may try different approaches to see how the pain responds—or doesn’t respond.

The “Shots”

One approach is to try some form of injection, which patients often mistakenly call “shots.” Injections performed by a pain physician aren’t like flu shots, which are blindly injected into the muscle or skin.

Rather, these are diagnostic and therapeutic tools. They’re targeted injections that are specifically placed and contain two components: Local anesthetic and steroid.

With our findings as our guide, we may put a local anesthetic on a specific nerve. If the pain is reduced, we know we’ve found the source. But even if the pain isn’t reduced, we’ve still made progress in our search for the source and possible treatments of the pain.

With the steroid, we’re able to reduce inflammation, promote tissue healing, and allow the nerve to reboot.

The Pathway to Relief

Many patients wonder if their treatments will be effective and how long they’ll last. Unfortunately, there’s no way to predict the outcome of any treatment because every patient is different. While we do expect treatments to be effective and last for some time, the reality is that most pain journeys have their ups and downs. 

In many ways, the pain journey is about breaking the pain cycle and peeling away the layers of pain. By the time a patient comes to our offices, three to six months after the pain was first discovered, there are so many other factors contributing to it, like altered biomechanics. 

Similarly, when people talk about chronic pain in the back, the focus is mainly on the specific points in the back where the pain is felt. In reality, there’s much more to it and things like lymphatics, nerves, and muscles could also contribute to the problem.

As interventional pain physicians and diagnosticians, we feel it’s our responsibility to diagnose and treat what we believe is the primary source of your pain. We also feel it's our responsibility to treat any additional sources of pain. By keeping you appraised of all of this information, we can teach our patients about what they’re experiencing and how we’re managing it.

This means that as you make your way through the pain journey, you can make educated decisions you feel confident about.

Pain management doctors – physicians who specialize in the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of pain – have advanced training that qualifies them as your best source of treatment if you are experiencing any type of pain due to illness or injury.

After a general residency, these physicians undergo an additional one-year fellowship in pain management, and they are board-certified in a specialty, such as sport injuries or cancer pain.

However, most pain management doctors devote their time and expertise to helping chronic pain patients whose needs can sometimes be hard to diagnose and take months or years to treat using multiple therapies.

Pain management doctors most often see patients with pain in the low back, knee, head, hip, and neck. Common conditions treated is these physicians include: arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraines, sciatica, and more.

But what do pain management doctors actually do?

For one thing, they diagnose the specific cause of your pain and the underlying conditions that lead to it. Take back pain, for example. It could be caused by many conditions ranging from poor posture at your work desk to a herniated disc to a degenerative condition like arthritis.

Once a pain management doctor diagnoses your pain, he or she can find the therapy that works best for you based on their specialized training and the latest research. In fact, pain management doctors often conduct their own trials and studies on patients who haven’t responded to conventional treatments.

Pain doctors often use a wide range of nonsurgical, interventional treatments – along with complementary therapies – as a way of reducing the amount of medication you need to take or to avoid the need for surgery. These may include massage, a weight loss regimen, acupuncture, exercise, yoga, meditation, physical therapy, dietary changes, or chiropractic care.

They may also prescribe pain-killing medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), muscle relaxants, or antidepressants. Depending on the severity of your specific condition, they may also recommend epidural steroid injections, nerve blocks, joint injections, radiofrequency ablation, spinal cord stimulation, or neuromodulation. If none of these methods are effective in alleviating your pain, surgery may be an option of last resort.

In any case, your pain management doctor will coordinate treatment between multiple doctors and healthcare professionals. In addition, he or she will continue ongoing care for any physical or mental concerns you may have. In that role, your pain management doctor acts as an advocate dedicated to relieving your symptoms.

To learn more about how a pain management doctor can help you overcome your pain issues, talk to the experts at Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center. We help patients like you every day. Get the discussion started by calling (855) 876-7246 for an appointment today or request an appointment online.

In a move that’s created a network of fifteen clinics and ambulatory surgery centers, Central Texas Pain Center and Pain Specialists of Austin have merged under the name Pain Specialists of America. This network includes locations ranging from Waco down to San Antonio.

While every location will change its name and logo, this expanded ecosystem gives our team a more comprehensive set of resources to rely on. This means that though you may only see one doctor, you’ll have the experience and expertise of a much bigger staff.

If you suffer from chronic pain, call any of our 15 locations for a consultation. At Pain Specialists of America, we offer expert pain care, now even closer to home.

Things You May Not Know About Why We Use an Ambulatory Surgery Center

Ambulatory surgery centers, known as ASCs, are health care facilities that provide outpatient surgical care, with no overnight stay required. Recent advances in surgical techniques, anesthesia, and pain management, have allowed ASCs to grow both in the types and quantities of surgeries performed. Surgery centers allow you to save 26% less time compared to having the same surgery performed in a hospital setting. 

We’ve built our state-of-the-art facilities from the ground up and designed them to provide our patients with complete comfort, utilizing soft colors and plenty of lighting, including skylights. 

They also offer more complex procedures, like those for joints, bones, ear, nose, and throat, plastic, reconstructive, and even the abdomen. Part of the growth of ASCs can be attributed to progress made with minimally invasive surgery (MIS). Because these procedures are far less invasive, the amount of anesthesia, pain, and recovery time is also reduced.

There are other reasons why ASCs have become not just viable, but a comparable option to inpatient.

Convenience

We seldom wonder if a surgery is going to be “convenient,” but when you consider the amount of staff required, the demands on the space, and the possibility of delays due to sudden emergencies, it’s easy to see how procedures performed in a traditional hospital setting could quickly become inconvenient. Ambulatory surgery centers, on the other hand, offer ease of scheduling and incur fewer delays since fewer emergencies are scheduled. Additionally, they are typically located away from busy (and larger) medical centers, which means easier access and parking.

Cost Savings

Medical care is expensive, but ambulatory surgery centers have found a way to decrease those costs. By being specialized in specific procedures and structured to function efficiently, ambulatory surgery centers enjoy lower overhead—which results in lower costs for insurance carriers and patients. Studies have shown ASCs are on average up to 60% less expensive than hospital procedures. And this benefits everybody.

Safety and Quality

Like any hospitals, ASCs are required to meet federal and state guidelines. To be licensed, they must pass not only an initial inspection, but must continue adhering to regulations and reporting. ASCs are typically Medicare certified, and many voluntarily go one step further and participate in accreditation programs and independent healthcare rating agencies. 

Studies also show a lower rate of infection in ambulatory surgery centers. Surgical site infection is half what you would find in a hospital setting on average: Hospital setting = 8.95/1000 while in a surgery center = 4.84/1000 patients*. Simply put, the risk of patients acquiring an illness or contagious disease at an ASC is significantly reduced, by almost half.

Much of this can be attributed to the avoidance of scheduling patients with known infection and the reduced exposure to patients with far more critical medical issues.

Other Benefits

Relying on an ASC for your procedure is much less stressful. Along with the reasons above, there’s the added benefit of recovering in your home, compared to a hospital setting.

One final thing to consider: ambulatory surgery centers, like our ASC in Killeen, focus on a select number of procedures, which means your treatment is provided by professionals specialized in your issues. Surveys report higher patient satisfaction with the care provided at an ASC. 

It’s easy to see why an ASC is the best choice for your care. And we expect more and more patients will reach the same decision. That’s why, to better accommodate this growing patient population, we’re building two new surgery centers in North and South Austin. This way we can offer the most advanced interventional procedures and surgeries in the safest environment possible. And that means the best outcome for you.

If you suffer from a condition that requires minor or day surgery, consider the benefits of an ambulatory surgery center. Then, give us a call to schedule a consultation. We think the benefits you’ll find in our ambulatory surgery center to be a welcome relief.

Source: https://www.ossmnewark.com/news/infection-risk-ambulatory-surgery-centers-safer-hospitals

Once a way to make phone calls, our mobile phones have become our resource for virtually everything we do: get directions, listen to music, take and share photos, search, shop, socialize, and, yes, even make phone calls.

But all of this phone usage comes at a cost. And sometimes this cost is a condition called “text neck.”

What is text neck? Text neck is neck pain caused by hunching over a mobile device for extended periods of time. Symptoms may include:

These symptoms can often lead to posture problems that only make matters worse.

Unlike other neck issues which can have many different causes, text neck comes from one cause: extended mobile device use with the head tilted down.

And it’s no surprise more and more people are suffering from text neck. The average American spends 5.4 hours per day on their phone. The average weight of the human head is between 10-12 pounds. Factor in the increased angle of the head and neck while looking at a phone and you get an increase of about 60 pounds of weight on our necks. For over 5 hours every day.

What can you do to mitigate this pain? There are a few easy ways to treat the pain on your own. The first—and most obvious—thing is simply to decrease the amount of time you spend on your mobile device. If you can’t limit the amount of time on your phone, be sure to take frequent breaks. 

Of course, if you don’t see results from doing these exercises, we’re here to help.  Our Care Team is ready to walk you through a treatment plan, step by step. You’re just a mobile phone call away from expert pain care, close to home.

Living a life with chronic pain can be complicated. Pain not only affects you, but it can also affect your friends and family, and potentially your work productivity. It can impact every aspect of your life, from difficult physical exertion to common tasks, like tying your shoes.

If you’re experiencing chronic pain, you’re not alone. As many as 100 million Americans deal with some form of chronic pain.

The beginning of a new year is almost always seen as a renewal, a fresh start, a sense of hope for something better. You can take your life back from daily chronic pain. You may have started and stopped many times in your pain management journey, that’s ok. Sometimes it’s necessary.

Here are a few tips to begin or continue your pain management journey in 2022.

Set up a system, not a resolution or goal
The goal or resolution to live a healthier life can be better achieved through establishing a system. A system makes your goal attainable. It’s concrete. It gets you moving in the right direction. A system is something you do on a regular basis. It might look like:

Drink more water. Whatever you are drinking now, double it if it is less than 40 oz per day. Dehydration can make chronic pain worse. Make sure you stay hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water. Avoid caffeinated drinks, like coffee and tea, as well as alcohol since these beverages will actually make you more dehydrated.
Move more. Analyze how much you sit and how much you move. Adjust accordingly—even if it’s a small amount.
Find support in fellow pain warriors. Stay connected with others who might share the same battle. Holding space for your pain flare ups with an understanding friend might help you go through those moments with less grief.
Create a sleep routine. One-third of Americans don’t get enough sleep on a regular basis, according to the CDC. The Sleep Foundation offers these tips to build a better sleep routine: decide on bedtime, leave electronics alone, have a light snack or bedtime tea, take a warm bath, listen to music, stretch & breath, practice meditation, read a good book, write down a to-do list or journal and prep your bedroom. Pick 1-2 changes you can start implementing today.

Research your pain management options
It’s common that most people do not know the difference between conventional pain management and interventional pain management. Conventional pain management includes medication treatments and over-the-counter medication to manage pain flare-ups. Essentially any type of treatment that does not invade the body in order to alleviate pain. It does not address the root of the problem; it simply band-aids. Interventional pain management (IPM) focuses on finding the root cause and interrupting the pain cycle. IPM is an ideal treatment for both acute and chronic pain and can be used to alleviate even the most complex source of pain. Interventional pain management doctors partner with you to establish a comprehensive treatment plan that addresses your specific needs. Pain sufferers are aware of the opioid epidemic that plagues our nation. Interventional pain management doctors are at the forefront of making a change to better the lives of pain sufferers through comprehensive treatment plans.

[maybe more on what an interventional pain doctor does?]
IPM doctors start with a thorough evaluation of your pain and overall health. With this data, the doctors consider all of the available, relevant treatment options and create the plan that best addresses the causes of pain. For a more complete look at IPM, read our blog from last month.

Everyone's pain is different and there are many factors that cause flare-ups. Stress, depression, anger, anxiety or fear, intrusive thoughts, isolation, underdoing, or overdoing can create more pain signals in the body. Taking back your life by putting yourself in charge of your day helps you manage chronic pain better.

The goal of interventional pain management is to help you find the best function and quality of life possible.

If pain is disrupting your life, there’s hope. Our interventional pain management team can help you take control of your health by providing you with information and treatment options. It’s time to get your life back. There’s no reason for you to suffer. Your first step is to click or call. Our Care Team is ready to walk you through your recovery, step by step. We provide expert pain care, close to home.

What Is Interventional Pain Management?

According to Dr. Pankaj Mehta, our Chief Medical Officer, “The priority of interventional pain management (IPM) is finding the root cause and interrupting the pain cycle. IPM is an ideal treatment for both acute and chronic pain and can be used to alleviate even the most complex source of pain.”

To describe what we do as “pain management” would be true, but it wouldn’t tell the full story. Yes, we provide pain management, but it goes much further than that.

We provide a variety of interventional treatment modalities to help manage your pain by creating a personalized plan —no matter what the cause or source.

As Dr. Mehta says, “We partner with patients suffering from pain. We help them optimize pain control, enhance daily functionality, and improve physical and psychological well-being.”

What’s the difference? Conventional pain management includes medication treatments and over-the-counter medication to manage pain flare-ups, essentially any type of treatment that does not invade the body in order to alleviate pain. It does not address the root of the problem; it simply band-aids.

Patients frequently come to us with multiple “pain generators,” which are sites of illness or injury that contribute to pain and suffering and detract from your quality of life.

Pain not only affects you, but it can also affect your friends and family, and potentially your work productivity. It can impact every aspect of your life, from difficult physical exertion to common tasks, like tying your shoes.

Our Process

First, we believe it’s critical to listen to the patient; to go beyond the traditional doctor-patient relationship, and create a partnership. Plus, no two people experience pain the same way, so personalized plans are critical.

Our approach to interventional pain management begins with a conversation. We listen to your concerns and your needs; how pain is affecting your life.

“This is why a partnership is important,” says Dr. Mehta. Because if you don't individualize the pain treatment for each patient, the outcome may not be as effective.

Along with our Care Team, we thoroughly process the information, imaging, and diagnostic testing to determine a diagnosis. The diagnosis helps us determine the range of treatment methods to address your pain. We take the “S.A.V.E.” approach to your course of treatment: Surgery At the Very End. There are many less invasive options to help you regain a functional life.

We create a “pain management ecosystem,” a complete program of the specialists, therapies, and other elements needed to reach your goals. A vital part of this ecosystem is your involvement.

According to Dr. Mehta, “We educate you on the non-opioid therapies available. This education not only empowers you on the choices you have but can help with your peace of mind.”

Our goal is to create a comprehensive approach to treat your suffering, to allow you to enjoy the quality of life you want.

We’re not limited to back and neck pain. We treat all kinds of pain, from headaches down to foot pain and neuropathy—and all points in between.

Interventional Pain Management Including

If pain is disrupting your life, there’s hope. Our interventional pain management team helps you take control of your health by providing you with information and treatment options. It's time to get your life back. There’s no reason for you to suffer. Your first step is to click or call. Our Care Team is ready to walk you through your recovery, step by step. We provide expert pain care, close to home.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates as many as 100 million U.S. adults suffer from chronic pain. More alarming was that 8 percent of U.S. adults (19.6 million) reported having high-impact chronic pain directly proportional to suffering. Clinicians at Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center have helped thousands of patients by identifying and treating the source of their chronic pain.

Chronic pain, as explained by Dr. Pankaj Mehta (MD, DABA, DABPM), a nationally renowned interventional pain doctor and Medical Director at Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center, is pain that persists for at least three months, despite treatment, with an intensity that disrupts normal physical function and sleep patterns, reduces strength, limits daily activities and negatively impacts one’s ability to work and recreate with family and friends.

According to Dr. Mehta, chronic pain is generally the result of damaged, inflamed or dysfunctional nerves resulting from structural deterioration associated with aging, physical injury or trauma, muscle strain and disease. Conventional pain management (CPM) treats pain with medications and prescription drugs. Medication temporarily alleviates pain symptoms but does not fix the cause of the pain. There’s a better method for treating chronic pain with interventional pain management (IPM). IPM focuses on identifying the underlying structural cause of the pain and interrupting nerve transfer of pain signals at their source.   We don’t just treat the pain symptoms; we treat the structural cause of your pain.

“Pain almost always has an underlying pathology, a structural deficit that in many cases can be treated effectively with advanced IPM,” he explained. “If you have chronic pain, there has to be a nerve or a group of nerves involved, which a local anesthetic block can diagnose.

This approach to addressing the underlying cause of your chronic pain is a concept Dr. Mehta calls “dampening the bad electric signals,” which he does through therapies such as nervous system stimulation or correcting spinal nerve compression via minimally invasive advanced spine therapies.

Pain does more than hurt physically,” he added, “it can impact physical, emotional and psychological well-being preventing individuals from being able to live a full and happy life.”

Dr. Mehta has found that many pain sufferers assume that they have no choice but to live with debilitating discomfort. Many times, they become discouraged after less effective treatment options do not work.

“Many people believe pain is an inevitable consequence of getting older, a lingering injury or a hereditary condition that runs in their family.  Some hope the pain will just go away.  Others don’t want to be perceived as complaining to their family and friends, so they just suffer in silence.”

Unfortunately, “a primary barrier to pain sufferers seeking treatment is a fear that they will be prescribed, and then become addicted to, opioid drugs.” That’s due to a public perception that “pain management treatment can only be accomplished with opioids,” he said, which, ironically, can be both an attraction and a repellent to people seeking pain treatment. “We’ve had people tell us that we don’t care about them because we won’t prescribe opioids, however, our unwillingness to allow them to become dependent on opioids shows how much we do care about them.  We seek a long-term solution and not a quick, short-lived medicative numbing approach for their chronic pain.”

To learn more about Pain Specialists of Austin’s and Central Texas Pain Center’s multi-disciplinary, interventional pain management treatment options and how the science of pain management can change your life, please visit their website www.psadocs.com.

Dr. Pankaj Mehta (MD, DABA, DABPM), a nationally renowned interventional pain doctor, is the Chief Medical Officer at Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center.

Dr. Mehta is a Board-Certified Anesthesiologist, trained at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, before completing an interventional pain fellowship at the prestigious Cleveland Clinic. During his training, Dr. Mehta was awarded a Harvard fellowship for NIH-sponsored research exploring the need for certain drugs in chronic opioid therapy.

Dr. Mehta, who has gained national recognition for his contributions to the field of interventional pain management, has been recognized as one of the Top Interventional Pain Management Physicians. He also was a recipient of the American Society of Pain and Neuroscience 2020 Clinical Excellence Award. In addition to lecturing nationwide on breakthroughs in interventional pain management, he is widely published in many prestigious medical journals. He serves as an educator for several healthcare companies that research and develop treatments for chronic pain. Dr. Mehta also collaborates with local clinicians to present pain management programs that encompass multiple interventional strategies.

A leading proponent of cutting-edge technologies, Dr. Mehta is not only a leading IPM practitioner, but he also trains other physicians nationwide on technologically advanced pain treatments. An early adopter of the latest scientific techniques to treat chronic pain, his goal is to provide effective pain management programs that delay or eliminate the need for invasive surgery. Conditions treated by Dr. Mehta include lower back and neck spine and associated leg pain, chronic postoperative pain, headaches, abdominal and pelvic pain, and degenerative joint disease.

Dr. Mehta’s practice at Pain Specialists of America focuses on a multi-disciplinary pain management approach based on each individual’s needs, integrating technologically advanced treatment modalities. His work as director of research for PSA’s ambulatory surgical centers plays a key role in the methodologies he uses to treat chronic pain, as he conducts cutting-edge research involving therapies to develop more effective treatment options for patients with chronic pain.

Dr. Mehta and his Minimally Invasive Spinal Therapy Team are “dedicated to partnering with our patients to eliminate or alleviate their pain, enhance their daily functionality and improve their physical and psychological well-being.”  This advanced team offers advanced programs for headaches, PTSD, spine pain and much more.

“We help pain sufferers regain their quality of life as quickly as possible,” Dr. Mehta said, “using evidence-based, cutting-edge therapies. We start with a comprehensive evaluation to diagnose the cause of their pain,” he explained, and “then we create a personalized treatment plan designed to provide long-term relief.”

Among his many accolades, Dr. Mehta is considered a leader in neuromodulation – the process of actively stimulating nerves to produce a natural biological response to pain.   Dr. Mehta treats patients referred from across Texas and the country. He is an active member of leading professional organizations, such as the North American Neuromodulation Society, International Neuromodulation Society and American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians.

“What I – and all the doctors at Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center – want people to know is that they don’t have to live with debilitating pain. There are treatment options that are safe, sustainable, result in improved physical function and strength, enabling a much better quality of life. That’s why we’re here – to help reduce and, if possible, eliminate patients’ pain.”

Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center is a network of 16 clinics and two surgery centers where medical practices provide multi-disciplinary pain management treatment options to their patients, under the administrative management of Pain Specialists of America. Pain Specialists of Austin and Central Texas Pain Center have provided Texans with high-quality, interventional pain management treatment options for over 20 years.

To learn more about Pain Specialists of Austin’s and Central Texas Pain Center’s multi-disciplinary, interventional pain management treatment options and how the science of pain management can change your life, please visit their website www.psadocs.com.

 

 

March 25-31 will mark the sixth annual National Physicians Week, seven days of acknowledgment ending in Doctor’s Day, a celebration of physicians’ dedication, hard work, impact on lives, and sacrifices for the public good.

The weeklong holiday not only recognizes the work of medical professionals in the present, but also commemorates the longstanding history of physicians, a story  27,000 years in the making.

Historians tell us that the first known healers showed up in cave paintings in what is now France, with ancient drawings depicting individuals using plants for medicinal purposes and performing rudimentary medical procedures.

With the Enlightenment Period of the 17th Century came a surge in the natural sciences and a new knowledge of chemistry that disputed the premise that all things were made up of earth, air, fire, and water. By the 20th Century, past strides and exponential growth in medical knowledge, techniques and tools combined to empower the modern physician in ways once unthought-of and inspire the scientific community to reach even greater heights in the fight against infirmity, injury and disease.

A lot happened in between, of course. Still, the point is that there have always been people who chose to dedicate their time and effort to relieving the pain and improving the lives of others, using whatever tools and knowledge available. The healers of the past would be astonished by the resources available to their counterparts today, but likely not by their dedication to their profession and patients.

Perhaps this is why we love to imagine physicians as superheroes in white coats, without capes but with the same fervent drive to correct what is wrong. This humble recognition of the positive impact physicians make has only further increased since the start of 2020 and the emergence of the global pandemic.

National Physicians Week marks a special time to reflect on the stresses these everyday heroes undergo, the years spent in training, the student debts they may have accrued, the increasingly hectic world of the ever-changing modern healthcare system and other sacrifices and obstacles they have to overcome.

With that top of mind, we recognize our own team members, who show up each day with smiling faces, a deep enthusiasm for positively impacting patient’s lives, and unmatched skills every day in their chosen field of pain management. We appreciate all they’ve done to get to this point, what they do for our patients and the ways in which they work diligently to advance our practices.

We’re proud of our doctors, and we encourage our patients to give them a shout-out, as well. Whether it be giving a carnation, writing a thank you note, or perhaps giving them a great online review, we really appreciate all of the kind remarks.

Happy National Physicians Week and Doctors Day to all medical practitioners and the people they serve!