Chronic Pain Management

Our chronic pain management program is multidisciplinary, with many options for treatment.

Chronic Pain Management

Hospital Angeles Tijuana System offers comprehensive pain management services with many methods to help bring pain under control and manage the side effects of treatment. Our chronic pain management program is multidisciplinary, with many options for treatment.

Chronic, or lasting pain, touches every aspect of our lives. Without pain management we cannot fully work, move about or enjoy life.

When thinking about chronic pain, it is important to realize the difference between chronic pain and acute pain. Acute pain is a normal reaction to an injury that provides an early warning system that an injury has occurred.

  • Chronic pain is pain that doesn’t go away after three months.
  • Chronic pain can be intermittent (occurring on and off). It may vary with intensity during the day or it can be persistent.
  • Chronic pain can result from a known cause, such as surgery or inflamed joints, or a consequence of a disease process, such as rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Many times the cause is unknown.

Chronic pain can be an abnormal processing of pain where the original injury or cause of acute pain has resolved, but the warning system has failed to shut off. When this occurs the warning bells are still going off, however it is no longer signaling “danger” or “harm” but rather indicating a problem of pain processing.

The guiding principle of our pain management doctors is that by relieving pain early in its cycle, side effects that make pain worse and curb activities can be limited.

Early intervention also lets patients become more active and avoid some of the deconditioning effects that worsen health, and the psychological complications of unremitting pain.

About Chronic Pain

In order to treat chronic pain more successfully, we need to diagnose it first, meaning that it is necessary to find out the specific cause of that pain, so we can target our treatment to that specific cause and not just mistreat with medication to an apparent and not diagnosed cause. In some cases a single steroid injection in to a part of the body will control the pain (acute pain, less than 3 months), but if we are doing this to treat a chronic condition that has a clear and evident cause, in this case the steroid injection (or epidural injection) won’t heal the pain during a prolonged time or it won’t cure the apparent cause.

This is why we have so much success with our patients, because we study them first and then we conclude to a direct cause-leading treatment that could include from specialized pain medication (not just opioid such as morphine and its derivatives) to more invasive treatments X ray, CAT scan or Fluoroscopic guided.

When we face chronic pain caused by cancer or chronic illness, we consider pain as a disease and not just a symptom. Why? Because if we are dealing with a chronic disease that we are not able to rule it out entirely, referring to cancer or other chronic organic condition, that pain syndrome will be present and therefore we need to be prepare for it, pain in this cases is a disease that comes by the hand of the first one, it is the secondary illness.

Common Causes of Facial Pain

  • Trigeminal neuralgia.
  • Sphenopalatine neuralgia.
  • Chronic pain after dental work or surgery.
  • Temporomandibular joint condition or dysfunction.
  • Burning mouth syndrome.
  • Glossopharyngeal neuralgia.

Commonly Used Procedures to Treat Chronic Face Pain

  • Gasser ganglion block, fluoroscopy guided.
  • Sphenopalatine nerve block, fluoroscopy guided.
  • Glossopharyngeal nerve block.
  • Stellate ganglion block, fluoroscopy guided.
  • Neural therapy.

Am I a Candidate for Pain Management?

You may be a candidate for care at our pain management center if your pain is severe and does not respond to conservative treatment, if it lasts more than two weeks, if the need for narcotic pain management medications keeps growing, and if prior surgery has not lessened your pain.

Two of the major, non-cancer chronic pains are:

  • Musculoskeletal Pain – Pain that affects the bones, muscles, ligaments and tendons. Musculoskeletal pain can result from various causes including sports or occupational injuries, motor vehicle collisions, repetitive strain injuries and disease processes, such as, arthritis.
  • Neuropathic Pain – A complex, multi-faceted state of chronic pain that may have no obvious cause. It can involve damaged tissue, injury or malfunctioning nerve fibers or changes in brain processing. An example of neuropathic pain is phantom limb syndrome. The brain still receives signals from nerves that originally carried impulses from the now missing limb. Other types of neuropathic pain include numbness, burning, “pins and needles” sensations and shooting pain.