At Midtown Neurology, P.C., the providers begin by obtaining the patient’s history as to what kind of pains and symptoms are present. Then, our providers will examine the person’s ability to move the head to the left and right, forwards and backwards, and side to side. The healthcare provider will observe the posture and movement of the neck and shoulders. He or she will feel the muscles in the neck, head, upper back, and shoulders to detect areas of pain and tension.
In some cases, further testing, such as an x-ray, computed tomography scan (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or electrodiagnostic testing (EMG or electromyography) will be recommended. The need for these tests depends upon the person’s age, symptoms, and medical history.
At Midtown Neurology, P.C., we have a licensed Physical Therapist who works side-by-side with our providers. This ideal relationship allows for fast and easy communication between the professionals involved in your care. Also, should the patient have new symptoms while under treatment, the therapist can call upon the provider to see the patient immediately. This constant face-to-face communication occurs throughout the day allowing for a more complete and comprehensive treatment plan.
Epidural injection — If needed, the provider may order an epidural injection should the medications, exercises, and physical therapy not help. This is performed by specialized physicians and under xray guidance. The steroid injection will alleviate much, if not all of the pain, the majority of the time. The body can safely have 3 of these in a 6-month period of time.
Electric stimulation – Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a treatment that uses a mild electric current, which is applied to the skin, to decrease pain and increase mobility and strength. This may be used in conjunction with therapy, medications, and injections. The physical therapist will help the patient determine if this modality will be beneficial and if so, will order it for the patient.
Cervical traction – Cervical traction involves decompression of the structures that could be causing neck and extremity pain. This may be used by our physical therapist, and if it helps, one will be ordered for the patient. Insurance usually covers this for home use.
Surgery – Surgery is the last option for treating neck pain at Midtown Neurology, P.C.. However, surgery does have a role in relieving symptoms related to a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc (cervical radiculopathy or cervical spondylotic myelopathy) after a trial of conservative therapy (e.g., stretching exercises, physical therapy, etc.). People with chronic neck pain who do not improve with the above treatments may benefit from referral to a Spine or Pain Specialty clinic. Our providers have close relationships with Atlanta’s top spine surgeons and will consult with the patient should this be needed. Again, this may be recommended only as a last resort should all other treatments fail.
Call 404-653-0039 to schedule your consultation.