Postoperative pain control is an integral part of anesthesiology services that we are dedicated to providing for all of our patients. Your anesthesiologist and surgeon will try to minimize any post-surgical (acute) pain. After we discuss the surgical plan either the surgeon or anesthesiologist will discuss with you any pain-management options that may decrease the postoperative pain associated with your operation.
We use a variety of pain-management techniques to reduce or eliminate postoperative pain. Generally, two of the most effective of these techniques include continuous epidural analgesia and regional nerve block techniques.
Continuous Epidural Analgesia: This technique entails the placement of a very small catheter (about the size of a fishing line) between the bones of the spine. A small amount of pain medicine (often a combination of a narcotic and a local anesthetic) is then infused continuously through the catheter into the “epidural” space. This epidural medicine blocks the transmission of pain signals and provides excellent, sometimes total postoperative pain relief. Also, this technique requires minimal doses of medication, thus it reduces the side effects from pain medications. Epidural analgesia is the same highly effective pain-relief method commonly chosen by women for childbirth. In fact, it is a safe procedure for pain relief after many types of major intra-thoracic or intra-abdominal surgery, and provides relief for days.
Regional Nerve Block Analgesia is the preferred method for pain relief after orthopedic surgery on a shoulder, arm or leg. For major orthopedic surgery such as knee or shoulder joint replacement we use a catheter for continuous regional nerve blocks that can reduce or eliminate pain for days after an operation. For shoulder and upper extremity surgery we perform a single-shot or continuous Brachial Plexus Nerve Block. A single shot block will reduce or completely eliminate pain for 12-24 hours. If your surgeon feels that additional relief is needed, a catheter would be placed.
For operations on the knee we use a femoral nerve block alone, or in combination with a sciatic nerve block. For foot and ankle procedures, we will use a sciatic nerve block. After discussions with your surgeon, together we would decide the best postoperative plan for you.
An alternative means of easing pain is patient-controlled analgesia, commonly called “PCA”. PCA involves a specialized infusion pump that delivers pain medication through an intravenous line. The pump is programmed to release pain medication, and it also includes a button that patients push to increase the supply of pain medicine quickly, efficiently, and safely. The machine incorporates safety features that prevent patients from getting too much medication. The PCA is managed by the surgical team and may be used alone or in conjunction with an epidural or regional nerve block technique to decrease postoperative discomfort.
We have a group of physicians who treat patients with chronic pain. Our Interventional Pain Medicine Physicians offer a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach to chronic pain.
At the Advocate Lutheran General Interventional Pain Management Center we provide our patients with the support and treatment necessary to manage their pain using a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach. Pain can be acute or chronic, mild to severe, and sometimes self-limiting. However, when pain persists after the normal healing process, and begins to become a part of life it can impact your quality of life.
Our mission is to provide the highest quality care to all patients. We pride ourselves in diagnosing and treating all pain conditions. Using various interventional options for the treatment of both acute and chronic pain, our goal is to help you improve daily function and better manage pain. We work closely with your other doctors to come up with a comprehensive plan to manage pain and determine the root cause of pain, potentially allowing for a cure. Our physicians are experts in interventional pain management techniques as well as conservative management strategies and will serve as pain medicine team leaders, coordinating complete pain care among various pain and rehabilitation specialists, including pain psychologists, occupational and physical therapists, and alternative medicine providers.
We understand that not all pain can be cured with interventional therapies but we believe that the majority of pain can be managed through appropriate diagnosis and treatment.
What is pain management?
Pain management is working to minimize the pain you are feeling so that you can maximize your quality of life. Interventional pain management requires a proper diagnosis and precise treatment plan to better manage pain. Therefore, we perform procedures which help diagnose the reason for pain as well as procedures which are meant to be therapeutic. Interventional pain procedures are also intended to help avoid surgery.
Pain Management Physician Team
Simon M. Adanin, DO
Jason Hennes, MD
He also serves with Dr. Adanin as Co-Director of the Acute Perioperative Pain Management Service at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital.
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