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How To Prepare For An Appointment With A Pain Physician

How to Prepare for An Appointment with a Pain Physician

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Pain is a very personal and subjective experience. How each person tolerates and describes the pain they feel impacts how a pain specialist develops a treatment plan.

For example, some patients may say:

  • “I feel a sharp pain in my knee every time I try to walk down the stairs.”
  • “My back feels like a bunch of needles are poking it all the time.”
  • “It’s like a hot poker coursing through my shoulder when I try to move it.”
  • “My knee hurts a lot when I walk.”
  • “My head is throbbing.”

In order for your doctor to put together the right treatment plan for you, he or she will likely ask you some questions. What are some of these questions your pain doctor may ask? Below are a few examples.

Questions your doctor might ask about your pain

Before your doctor’s appointment, give some thought to the questions below.   You should be prepared to answer these questions when you see your physician about your chronic pain condition. [1]

  1. Where is your pain located? How often do you experience this pain? Is it worse at certain times of the day or night?
  2. How severe (strong) is your pain right now? How severe (strong) on average has it been in the last week? In the last few days? In the last month?
  3. Has your pain interfered with your ability to perform daily tasks such as showering, dressing, eating, etc.?
  4. Over the last week (or longer), has your pain interfered with your ability to focus on tasks at work or at home?
  5. How often do you socialize with friends or do hobbies or activities for fun? Over the last week (or longer), has your pain interfered with any of these? (For example, has your pain been so strong it’s been hard to hold a conversation with a friend?)
  6. Does your pain impact your ability to sleep?
  7. Has your pain affected your appetite or energy levels?
  8. Do you find that your mood and personality have changed as a result of your pain? If so, how? (For example, have you become more irritable?)
  9. Do you use alcohol or other drugs or medications for your pain? If so, which ones and how often? How do you feel afterwards?
  10. Do you do any type of physical activity or exercise during the week? Has your pain interfered with your ability to do this? If so, how?

The above questions are just some of the questions your pain physician may ask. Depending on the location of your pain and other factors like your lifestyle, overall health and the severity of your pain, more questions may be required to help you find the best pain-relief option.

A Final Note: Learn about your pain relief options before you see your doctor

Before your appointment, it’s a great idea to take some time to explore the different options available for treating pain. One such treatment is the SPRINT PNS System. This breakthrough device has been proven to provide sustained pain relief and clinical studies have been conducted on low back pain, shoulder pain, post-amputation pain and chronic and acute post-operative pain. A minimally invasive device, SPRINT works for 60 days to provide pain relief without the use of opioids or needing to be permanently implanted.

Learn more about how SPRINT PNS works here.


[1] https://www.clinicaladvisor.com/home/features/difficult-to-treat-chronic-pain-syndromes/

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