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Am I looking for a doctor in Pain Management or Pain Medicine?

Updated: Aug 18, 2023

Person sitting on laptop on Google Search Page

The subspecialty of Pain Medicine focuses on the treatment of pain. The confusing part of this subspecialty is that it can be listed in several ways. I officially list my subspecialty as Pain Medicine as this is how my certifying board, the American Board of Anesthesiology, lists it. However, I see patients commonly search for Interventional Pain Doctor,” “Pain Management,” “Pain Specialist,” and/or “Pain Doctor.” What adds to the confusion is that different institutions and companies will list the specialty differently as well.

What even adds to the confusion is that doctors who specialize in Pain Medicine or Pain Management can focus on the different aspects of the assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and management of different pain conditions. In addition, when it comes to treatment and management, different doctors also specialize in different things. Some doctors focus only on medication management, while I focus on a comprehensive evaluation of your pain and can offer a wide variety of minimally invasive interventional treatments to help you with your pain. In essence, I am a comprehensive interventional pain doctor. My first step to understanding and evaluation your pain is using my Pain Unlayering Protocol (see my blog post about the Pain Unlayering Protocol to learn more about this unique method.)

A medical subspecialty, by definition, means that you must be trained in one medical specialty before you can get training in Pain Medicine. My specialty is Anesthesiology. There are other specialties that can get trained in the subspecialty of Pain Medicine like Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Neurology, Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine, Psychiatry and Radiology.

In other words, you must complete a residency in one specialty before you can complete a fellowship in Pain Medicine. The same applies for the board certification process: you need to be board-certified in one the above specialties before you can be board-certified in Pain Medicine. For me, I completed a residency and became board-certified in Anesthesiology before I completed a fellowship and became board-certified in Pain Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (see my blog post about board certification to learn more about the process.)

Because there are multiple ways pain physicians can be listed, there is a lot of confusion as to how to look for a pain management doctor. If you want to find a pain doctor that is well-trained and offers a wide variety of treatment options, including minimally invasive interventional treatments, I suggest that you look for board-certified interventional pain management doctor.

Request an appointment on my contact page and see how I, as a board-certified interventional pain management doctor, can help you ease your pain and get back to living your life.


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