Targeted Pain Treatment is the process of accurately identifying the cause(s) of your pain, and then coming up with a specific plan to treat all of those causes and get you back to living life again. A pain management specialist is a physician with extra formal training in understanding and treating the specific cause of your pain. We provide advanced, minimally invasive treatments designed to target the causes of your pain, and get you moving again!
There are four main components to a Targeted Pain Treatment evaluation and plan:
1. Accurate diagnosis – Your pain management specialist will first work with you to figure out exactly what is causing the pain you are experiencing. This is done by getting a thorough history, physical exam, and any necessary imaging or tests. A history is an explanation of your pain, symptoms, how it started, how it’s affecting you, what you have tried in the past, and how it is working for you. The history helps us understand the most about your pain, so the more details the better! Next, the physical exam helps identify what anatomic structures may be contributing to your pain. Are there specific muscles or nerves that are involved? What functional limitations are present that are stopping you from doing what you enjoy. Finally, if necessary, the specialist will order and review any tests or advanced imaging. This can show which anatomic structures (bones, nerves, muscles, ligaments, etc.) are contributing to the pain you’re experiencing, and also show us if it is safe to target them with minimally invasive procedures, or other treatments.
2. Targeted Treatment: This involves specifically Treating the SOURCE of your pain and all underlying causes. Importantly, this is not just covering it up with medication alone, some of which may be addictive or cause liver or kidney problems, but instead using multiple treatment options together to address the cause of your pain. Targeted Treatment may include advanced but minimally invasive injections designed to put medicine right at the source of the problem (such as nerves in or around the spine, muscles in the back and neck, etc.). These procedures are done with imaging guidance, such as x-ray or ultrasound, to ensure accuracy, safety and efficacy of the procedures. We may also recommend specific medications designed to strategically target the way that your body transmits the pain signals, while monitoring for safety of those same medications to ensure they do no harm. Physiotherapy is another very important component of targeted pain treatment. Your pain specialist will often recommend physiotherapy in addition to medications or injections, in order to address the specific functional limitation, you’re experiencing.
3. Focus on Function: You and your pain management specialist will work to identify what functional goals you want to achieve, and what we need to do to treat the pain that’s stopping you from achieving them. Do you want to get back to your morning walks? Maybe you want to be able to sleep through the night without waking up in pain. How about being able to play with your children or grandchildren? Or stand through the praise and worship at church? Once we identify the way in which pain is limiting your function the most, we will come up with a plan together to address and improve your function through Targeted Pain Treatment.
4. Education and Empowerment: Throughout the entire evaluation and treatment process, you and your physician specialist will work together to be sure we understand the “Why, How and What”, of your Targeted Pain Treatment plan – Why you’re hurting, How the different treatment options work to improve your function, and What specifically we need to do about it. You as the patient are ultimately in charge of which treatments we use. You are empowered to make the decisions and do your part to regain the function that chronic pain has taken away.
Pain management services are now available at the Bougainvillea Clinic, right here in Road Town, Tortola. The same state of the art treatments, procedures, and physiotherapy that once required a flight to Puerto Rico, or a boat to St. Thomas, are done right here in the BVI. At the Bougainvillea Clinic, our visiting pain management specialist will perform comprehensive evaluations, order any necessary advanced imaging (MRI, CT scan, Ultrasound), and perform minimally invasive, image-guided injections as necessary to help improve your function and relieve your pain. We also have outstanding physiotherapists who work with you to optimize your pain relief and function.
Step 1: Request a referral for a Targeted Pain Treatment evaluation – your GP or other clinician can write a referral and send it to the Bougainvillea Clinic – Attention Pain Management Clinic.
Step 2: Call to schedule an appointment – Call the Bougainvillea Clinic at 284-444-2181 or 284-442-0117. Our scheduling team will work with you to get your consultation appointment and any procedure appointments scheduled when the pain specialist is on island.
Step 3: Bring any pain-related medical records/imaging reports or CDs of images to your first appointment. This is important to allow the specialist to have all the information needed to make an informed, accurate diagnosis, and start the Targeted Pain Treatment process.
At the Bougainvillea Clinic, we continue to strive to advance healthcare in the Caribbean. Targeted Pain Treatment is just one of the many services we offer to help improve the health of the people of the BVI and surrounding islands. Call today to schedule your consultation!
Dr. Stephanie G. Vanterpool is a Targeted Pain Treatment clinician, researcher and advocate. She is the Director of Comprehensive Pain Services, as well as an Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology for the University of Tennessee’s Graduate School of Medicine. She is a proud BV Islander, the daughter of Dr. Heskith Vanterpool and Mrs. Jean Vanterpool, and returns to the BVI regularly to provide specialized pain management services at the Bougainvillea Clinic. “I am honored and humbled to use my skills and knowledge to serve my people of the BVI and help them find relief from pain” says Vanterpool.
Dr. Stephanie G. Vanterpool received her MD from Duke University School of Medicine and completed her anesthesiology residency at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and subsequently completed a pain fellowship at Carolina’s Pain Institute/Wake Forest University. She then entered private practice for several years before returning to Duke’s Fuqua School of Business to obtain her MBA. She is a Fellow of the American Society of Anesthesiologists and board certified in both anesthesiology and Pain medicine. She is recognized as a regional and national leader in pain management education, practice and policy. She serves on the board of directors and holds multiple leadership positions within state and national organizations. Most recently Dr. Vanterpool was appointed to serve on the Tennessee Opioid Abatement Council by the State’s Speaker of the House. She also directs an annual continuing medical education conference teaching other clinicians how to evaluate and treat pain through Targeted Pain Treatment. Her professional passion is to create a paradigm shift in how pain is assessed and treated through awareness, application and advocacy.