Pain & Headache

Effective Treatments

Pain is our body's way of letting us know that something is wrong. Often, pain is temporary and not an indication of a serious issue. Other times, patients struggle with chronic pain and require medical intervention to manage symptoms and provide relief. We provide a multidisciplinary approach to pain management and treatments for patients suffering from chronic headaches and neurological conditions that produce pain and discomfort.

Understanding Headaches

Headaches are a common condition to most people suffer at one time or another. Headaches are caused for various reasons and can occur almost anywhere on the head or face. The International Headache Society has defined serval types of serious headaches that may require medical intervention.

Migraines
Migraines are an intense form of headache that produces other symptoms beyond just head pain. Those suffering from a migraine may also experience:

  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Lightheadedness
  • Visual distortion
  • Light sensitivity (photophobia)

Migraine sufferers often experience a migraine in several different stages. These stages can include a premonition phase, where the patient can experience a shift in mood or behavior, the aura phase, where the patient experiences mild symptoms that precede a headache, and even a resolution phase, that can leave some patients feeling refreshed after a migraine has passed.

Cluster headaches
Cluster headaches are headaches that occur in quick succession that can last weeks or even months. These headaches are often characterized by pain behind one eye, swollen eyelids, runny nose, and swelling.

Tension headaches
Considered the most common type of headache, the tension headache is thought to be caused by muscle tension and stress. Patients experience a wide variety of symptoms, but usually only experience mild pain.

Peripheral neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy describes damage to our peripheral nervous system (the network of nerves that carries signals to and from our brain and spinal cord). There are more than 100 different types of peripheral neuropathy, each with its own causes, symptoms, and prognosis. There are, however, four major categories of this condition:

  • Sensory neuropathy affects the nerves that control what we feel when we touch things.
  • Motor neuropathy affects nerves related to our motor skills.
  • Combination neuropathies exhibit symptoms of two or more other known types of neuropathy.
  • Autonomic nerve neuropathy affects the nerves that control unconscious functions of our body, like breathing and heartbeat.

Our doctors, neurologists, and therapists will work with patients suffering from peripheral neuropathy to minimize its effect on their comfort and everyday lives. From diagnosis, to treatment, and recovery, our trusted network of professionals is ready to partner with you.

Trigeminal neuralgia

Trigeminal neuralgia is a type of nerve pain that occurs in the face. This condition is most often seen in patients over the age of 50, but patients of any age can experience it. Trigeminal neuralgia produces an intense, sharp (or burning) pain that occurs in bursts lasting from a few seconds to a couple of minutes. Patients often can tell they are about to have an attack to due to an ache or tingling in their cheek or jaw.

It is believed that trigeminal neuralgia is caused by a blood vessel pressing against the trigeminal nerve, but those with multiple sclerosis and tumors have also suffered from the condition as well. Drugs developed to treat epilepsy have proven effective in treating trigeminal neuralgia, but in some cases, surgical options (microvascular decompression, radiofrequency rhizotomy and stereotactic radiosurgery/Gamma Knife®) should be considered.

Saint Barnabas Medical Center
94 Old Short Hills Road
Livingston, NJ 07039
(973) 322-5000
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Monmouth Medical Center
300 Second Avenue
Long Branch, NJ 07740
(732) 222-5200
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Monmouth Medical Center Southern Campus
600 River Avenue
Lakewood, NJ 08701
(732) 363-1900
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Community Medical Center
99 Highway 37 West
Toms River, NJ 08755
(732) 557-8000
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Newark Beth Israel Medical Center
201 Lyons Avenue at Osborne Terrace
Newark, NJ 07112
(973) 926-7000
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Children's Hospital of New Jersey at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center
201 Lyons Avenue at Osborne Terrace
Newark, NJ 07112
(973) 926-7000
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The Bristol-Myers Squibb Children's Hospital at RWJUH
200 Somerset Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
(732) 828-3000
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RWJ University Hospital New Brunswick
1 Robert Wood Johnson Place
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
(732) 828-3000
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RWJ University Hospital Rahway
865 Stone Street
Rahway, NJ 07065
(732) 381-4200
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RWJ University Hospital Somerset
110 Rehill Avenue
Somerville, NJ 08876
(908) 685-2200
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