What Type of Back Doctor Do You Need?

April 30, 2021

HARVARD TRAINED back PAIN DOCTORS in New jersey

Paramus Back Dr Explains the Differences between 5 Types of Pain Specialists

The idea of living a full, active life seems almost impossible for the over 16 million Americans dealing with chronic back pain. Fortunately, this is not unachievable if you know where to look for effective treatments and proper care.

Pain physicians are not all the same. There are many medical specialists available for people suffering from back pain, but when you don’t know the differences between them, choosing the one that can help you will turn into an overwhelming process. Ultimately, the most suitable type of pain physician to treat your condition will be mainly determined by the type of symptoms you experience, as well as the duration and intensity of these symptoms.

Typically, in a spine center such as Pain Treatment Specialists, you should be able to find a range of specialists that are board-certified in pain management, all working under the guidance of a medical director and making sure all of your needs are covered. Some of our specialists, including Dr George Hanna, who is an expert in pain management and anesthesiology, have more than one specializations that complement each other.

If you are looking for a back Dr near you in Clifton, don’t hesitate to contact us and schedule an appointment with one of our pain management specialists. In order to understand whom you should turn to, you need to be aware of the various types of pain doctors that can treat back pain, as well as how they are able to help you.

If your back pain is preventing you from having a normal life, book an appointment with a back dr near you, in Clifton

What is a General Practitioner?

While not exactly specialized in pain medicine, general practitioners (usually your family doctor or primary care physician) should be the first ones to contact when you are dealing with the early symptoms of back pain.

They should be able to prescribe pain relievers, instruct you on some light exercises, or even refer you to a physical therapist if necessary. If, however, the doctor believes your condition is urgent, he or she will most likely recommend medical tests and guide you through scheduling an appointment with a specialist, such as a rheumatologist or a neurologist.

Keep in mind that general practitioners gravitate towards more traditional practices and are slow to include new treatment options. If your pain does not go away in a few days, it means you should be looking for more targeted treatment and seek a chronic back pain specialist.

What is a spine surgeon?

Both orthopedists and neurosurgeons are trained to perform the vast majority of spine surgery treatments. To become fully-trained practitioners, they often choose to undergo a spine fellowship. There are, however, some small differences between the two specializations:

What is an orthopaedic surgeon? 

An orthopaedic surgeon is a board-certified specialist that focuses on treating problems of the musculoskeletal systems, including, but not limited to, the spine. An orthopaedic surgeon will usually diagnose and treat conditions and spinal disorders such as scoliosis, ruptured discs, arthritis, fractures, and sports injuries.

What is a neurosurgeon? 

A neurosurgeon is a doctor that specializes in disorders of the central nervous system and peripheral nervous system (nerves that originate from the spine). While neurosurgeons have the ability to perform non-surgical treatments as well, you will usually be referred to one only if other methods of treatment have been unsuccessful.

What is a rheumatologist?

Rheumatologists are board-certified doctors that specialize in the treatment of arthritis, as well as other musculoskeletal diseases. They go through years of training to be able to diagnose and treat conditions such as osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, tendonitis, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, musculoskeletal pain disorders, and more.

Because many of these conditions are difficult to identify, you need to go to an experienced rheumatologist that can properly diagnose musculoskeletal disorders and act fast to provide accurate treatment.

A rheumatologist may also serve as a consultant for another pain doctor, providing valuable insight into the issue and helping them tailor a suited treatment plan for patients. In other cases, they are also the ones that lead a patient’s treatment journey, forming a team of physicians, therapists, and other medical specialists to help them.

What is a neurologist?

A neurologist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of nervous system disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, strokes, multiple sclerosis, or other brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerve disorders. Your doctor may consider referring you to a neurologist if you are dealing with chronic and long-lasting back or neck pain, as they have the proper expertise to determine the origins of the pain.

Neurologists are qualified to examine all of the body’s essential neurological processes in detail. The nerves of the head and neck, muscle strength and movement, balance, ambulation, and reflex testing are just a few of the things a neurologist will assess. One of the most important things you will be able to determine after an appointment with a neurologist is if you are dealing with a primary neurological condition or a musculoskeletal disorder.

What is a physical therapist?

Physical therapists review patients’ medical records, conducting physical examinations to measure aspects such as strength, range of motion, balance, coordination, posture, and muscle capacity. Based on the results, they can then create tailored treatment plans that include goals, steps taken to meet those goals, and expected outcomes.

If patients have been immobilized for a period or are dealing with flexibility issues, regular exercise is always part of the treatment. This encourages patients to rely on their own muscles to improve flexibility and range of motion before moving to exercises that increase balance, endurance, and strength.

Physical therapists are often working and consulting with other practitioners, some being an important asset for spine clinics.

If you are looking for a pain doctor near you, in Clifton and Paramus, New Jersey, don’t hesitate to contact the team of board-certified doctors at our clinic. If costs are your main concern, you can rest assured knowing that our services are covered by major medical insurances, so you will not need to postpone getting suitable treatment due to financial inconveniences. Schedule an appointment with one of our back pain specialists in Clifton, on Route 46E, just past the Ford dealership.

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Meet Our Team of Back Pain Specialists

All of our Pain Doctors in New Jersey are Harvard Trained and Board Certified in Pain Management

Dr. George Hanna - Back Pain Treatment Specialist in NJ

Back Pain Doctor Clifton & West Orange NJ

Dr. George Hanna

Dr. Hanna is a Harvard Trained back specialist in New Jersey and New York.  He serves as Medical Director of Pain Management.

Dr. Lombardi - Back pain treatment specialist NJ

Back Pain Doctor Clifton & West Orange NJ

Dr. Laura Lombardi

Dr. Lombardi is a Harvard Trained back pain treatment doctor, currently seeing patients in Clifton and West Orange, New Jersey.

Dr. Shane Volney - Back Pain Doctor NJ

Back Pain Doctor Clifton & West Orange NJ

Dr. Shane Volney

Dr. Volney is a Harvard Trained back treatment doctor seeing patients in the NJ areas of Clifton & West Orange, and in NYC.

Dr M Circle Thumb

Back Pain Doctor Clifton & West Orange NJ

Dr. Michael Nguyen

Dr. Nguyen is Harvard Trained and Board Certified in Pain Management. His pain center accepts major medical insurances and Medicare.

Dr. Hanna

Dr. George Hanna

Dr. Hanna is a Harvard Trained back specialist in New Jersey and New York.  He serves as Medical Director of Pain Management.
Dr. Hanna

Dr. Laura Lombardi

Dr. Lombardi is a Harvard Trained back pain treatment doctor, currently seeing patients in Clifton and West Orange, and Paramus New Jersey.

Dr. Hanna

Dr. Shane Volney

Dr. Volney is a Harvard Trained back treatment doctor seeing patients in the NJ areas of Clifton & West Orange, and in NYC.

Dr. Hanna

Dr. Michael Nguyen

Dr. Nguyen is Harvard Trained and Board Certified in Pain Management. His pain center accepts major medical insurances and Medicare.