Hunter Valley Private Hospital is a boutique private facility in Newcastle and where we offer a holistic approach to patient care as part of our pain management service.
We aim to provide improvements in quality of life for our patients with chronic or extreme pain conditions and do this in a consultative multi-disciplinary environment.
Our doctors, nurses and allied health staff are committed to providing a wide range of treatments and rehabilitation services so our patients can find relief from their ongoing conditions.
Types of pain
Lower back pain can be a debilitating condition and cause limitations to activities of daily living.The spine is essential in providing support for us to be upright and discs, ligaments and muscles work together for this.If there has been disruption to the usual function of the discs/vertebral bodies then nerves are effected and neuropathic pain, changes in sensation and weakness can be the result.The lumbar region of the spine is where the low back pain originates.
The upper part of the spine that connects the body to the head is called the cervical spine. When neck pain occurs it is usually a complex combination of symptoms but will limit the head movement/comfort and sleep of the patient.Like lower back pain, the muscles will restrict the normal range of movement so that the discs/spinal cord are protected and pain is often sharp on movement or deeply aching.
A complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) response occurs when our limbs or other parts of the body, have a disproportionate pain response to the stimulus.Traumas such as nerve injury or fractures can trigger the pain response.The nerve response and pain signals are complex and our pain service offers solutions to assist with management of CRPS.
Neuropathic or nerve pain is often described as a shooting or burning pain. It can be unrelenting and severe, or it can be intermittent.A feeling of numbness or a loss of sensation is common also.It can flare up at any time without an obvious pain inducing event or factor and tends to get worse over time.
Arthritis of the hips and knees is inflammation of the joint that causes pain.Osteoarthritis is the most common and age related, degenerative and progressive.Often this pain will trigger an alteration in the bodies biomechanics and can cause pain in the patient’s feet or lower back as they move differently to try and minimise the pain.
Headaches present in a variety of forms and usually require ruling out different pathologies prior to a treatment being commenced. Once a diagnosis is found the treatment is usually about symptom reduction so that the patient can continue to function with their usual activities. Neck pain/ eye strain and other factors need to be considered.
Types of Procedures
Radiofrequency neurotomy uses heat generated by radio waves to target specific nerves and turn off their ability to send pain signals.It is a denervation technique where the needles inserted under X-ray guidance and sedation, emit the energy to exactly where it is needed to disrupt the pain pathway. The result is to reduce or resolve the pain from the joints that are providing the chronic pain.
An epidural injection is a minimally invasive procedure to offer relief from pain in the neck, arm, back and legs, that is caused by inflamed spinal nerves due to spinal stenosis or disc herniation.Pain can be produced from the ligaments, discs and nerve rootlets within the epidural space. Bathing all these structures in a large volume of local anaesthetic and cortisone is capable of producing weeks or months of relief from such pain. Even if the duration of relief is much shorter than this, it can help with making a diagnosis of the source of your back pain.
A intrathecal pump is a device that is used to deliver medication directly to the spinal canal.The intrathecal pump is surgically implanted under the skin of the abdomen and the catheter from the pump is placed in the space between the spinal cord and the membranes that protect it.The medication in the intrathecal space that surrounds the spinal cord interrupts the pain signals before they reach the brain.This procedure is carried out under X-ray and general anaesthesia.
To make an appointment with one of our Pain Specialists please contact:
Dr Anthony Schwarzer
P 02 4955 0000
F 02 4955 0007
Dr Claire Hollo
P 02 4955 0000
F 02 4955 0007