When To Refer A Patient
Knowing when to refer a patient for pain management is a critical component of good patient care. While that may seem obvious, many of today’s patients are still being referred for spine surgery before all noninvasive or minimally invasive treatments have been tried.
Even patients with pathology and symptoms that were traditional indicators for surgical intervention – herniated discs, spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis, for example – should be referred first for pain management and/or physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R). Often, PM&R and pain management can help your patient avoid surgery.
Recent statistics suggest that as many as half of all spine surgeries fail. So it is critically important for your patient’s health and well-being to try every other alternative first. Alternatives may include:
- Epidural injections
- Radiofrequency ablation
- SYNVISC® for arthritis/joint pain
- Diagnostic & therapeutic nerve blocks
- Radiologically guided injection therapy
- Spinal cord stimulators
- Disc procedures
- Facet injections
- Botox® injections
- Manual physical, aquatic & occupational therapy
- Medication management
- Physical conditioning & strengthening
- Migraine treatment
- Regenerative medicine
- Aesthetic medicine
Even with a condition like degenerative spondylolisthesis, surgery should only be considered in the presence of an acute neurologic deficit such as significant leg weakness, and only after all other options have been exhausted.
Whether your patient has back pain or any other kind of musculoskeletal pain (shoulders, knees, etc.), referring to a PM&R and pain management practice first appears to be the most prudent course of action.
As the only practitioner in the area who is double-board-certified in Pain Medicine and board-certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Scott R. Jahnke, DO, offers your patients many safe, proven alternatives to surgery.
His unique combination of pain management and physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R) capabilities (multiple disciplines and modalities) are aimed at meeting the needs of each patient. Dr. Jahnke is committed to helping your patients find relief and achieving the best results.
Over the years, Dr. Jahnke has accurately diagnosed painful conditions in thousands of patients, then successfully controlled or eliminated their pain while improving their quality of life. He has helped people return to work, sports, activities, hobbies and lives. Discover how he can help your patients, too.
Call today to schedule your patient’s preferred appointment time or use our secure online appointment request form. We encourage, honor and welcome your referrals.