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Published on September 11, 2017

How Gundersen pain management providers can help

Stephanie Neuman, MD

Stephanie Neuman, MD

Pain management providers at Gundersen Health System are specially trained in pain relief procedures, alleviating your patients' pain through injections and surgeries rather than managing it through medication.

Given recent concern over the rise in abuse of prescription opioids, however, the role of pain management providers has become muddied for some.

"We've really started to see an increase in the number of opioid management referrals within the last six months, and the amount keeps growing," says Stephanie Neuman, MD. "It has grown to about 50 percent of our referrals, which means patients needing a pain injection or procedure often have to wait longer for an appointment."

Dr. Neuman emphasizes that while her department is happy to meet with your patients who may benefit from guidance on the safe use of opioids and to make recommendations for them, opioid management—and medication management more generally—is not their focus and is something that should be addressed by your patients' primary care physician.

"We're happy to keep seeing those patients from a procedural standpoint and suggest alternative options, but when it comes to medication management, the expectation is that patients return to their primary care provider," Dr. Neuman says.

If you would like to schedule an informational session for your staff with Dr. Neuman to gain insight on opioid medication management for chronic pain patients or other related topic, please contact our Regional Services and Telemedicine Department via MedLink at (800) 336-5465 or in La Crosse at 775-5465.

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