Pain is the top reason individuals seek health care, more so than treatment for diabetes, heart disease and cancer combined, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano has opened the Texas Health Pain Relief & Wellness Center to address the complex needs of individuals in pain.
The Pain Center, located on the campus of Texas Health Plano, now brings together nurse practitioners, nutritionists, physicians on the medical staff and physical therapists to create customized care, all in one centralized location. The Pain Center also has access to chiropractors. The wide range of specialties involved will work to enhance a patient’s quality of life to experience it more fully without pain.
“When you’re dealing with chronic pain issues, you need coordinated involvement across healthcare specialties,” said Dr. Jon Koning, a pain management physician on the Texas Health Plano medical staff. “This pain management program makes everything available and accessible to patients to meet their specific needs with a focus on alternative methods of pain control in addition to medications. I think it’s going to make a huge difference.”
An extensive evaluation of each patient’s history, care plans and level of pain makes the Pain Center unique, said Sarah Batres, program coordinator.
“We focus on conservative care, and we try to refrain from medications as much as we can, on the front end,” she said. “Even though medications can take away the symptoms of pain, it’s not treating the causes of pain. Balancing manual therapy with psychological therapy is critical when it comes to addressing the needs of the entire person. That’s the beauty of this program.”
The current opioid epidemic has highlighted the need for a comprehensive look at how best to treat the patient’s overall needs.
“When it comes to the current opioid epidemic, addiction is an unfortunate reality for some individuals with chronic pain,” said Koning. “Often there’s no cure for individuals living with chronic pain, but the Pain Center can help patients manage their pain with a variety of care, ranging from conservative to surgical. The better the conservative care, the less of a need for narcotics.”
The Joint Commission encourages organizations to “establish education programs, training, policies, and procedures that improve the assessment and treatment of pain without promoting the unnecessary or inappropriate use of opioids.”
The Pain Center also has access to chiropractic care. New research from the American Medical Association and American College of Physicians shows a collaborative approach is best, said Jason Moss, KC CORE president, and a chiropractic provider collaborating with the Texas Health Pain Relief & Wellness Center.
“When you combine the elements of chiropractic care, physical therapy and medical care, it makes the approach more powerful, more effective and possibly cheaper for the patient in the long run,” Moss said.
With chronic pain there usually isn’t a quick fix, but by bringing various specialties together, Batres said she expects the Pain Center will make a long-term difference for patients.
“The Pain Center provides a conservative, careful approach to pain management,” she said. “We don’t want to do too much, and we don’t want to do too little. Working with the patient, we want to help them achieve and maintain a long-term, pain-free lifestyle.”
To learn more about Texas Health Plano’s new approach to pain care, visit TexasHealthPainRelief.com.