Is this going to hurt?

This question is likely going to cross your mind when you enter our office and it is one I answer many times every day. From the first time patient with a little fear and trepidation in their eyes, to the determined ‘nothing can hurt me’ regular, nobody really wants to be in pain. Just how much something is going to hurt is a challenging question to answer mainly because the perception of pain is subjective and individual to you. No matter what I tell you about how much something may or may not hurt, what you feel is real and unique to you.

Pain management really begins before your procedure even starts; the surgeon you choose plays a key role in your post operative pain and downtime. Excellent surgical skill combined with advanced techniques to minimize trauma to the surrounding areas will greatly decrease your discomfort and healing time. A great surgeon will also openly and honestly discuss how you’re feeling and make sure that any pain or discomfort you have is addressed quickly.

Prior to any procedure I will go over with you in detail what you can expect during recovery including how long you may have pain and discomfort. I will be with you every step of the way to make sure your recovery or treatment is as easy and pain free as possible. If that means holding your hand during a difficult injection or working with you to make sure that your prescription medications are adequately managing your pain, that’s what I’ll do. When I discuss pain and recovery expectations with patients in the weeks and months after their surgery, I generally hear that they had less pain than anticipated and 100% are happy and say they would do it again.

All that said, most medical procedures, elective or not, are not pain free but the outcomes are worth the temporary discomfort. I frequently tell patients that “nothing is free”, and by that I’m not referring to the financial cost of the treatment or procedure. The real ‘cost’ includes some pain and discomfort, lifestyle disruptions and the time it takes to recover and heal. Do elective procedures hurt? Yes. Is it the worst pain ever? No. I promise it is not the worst pain ever, it won’t hurt forever and any pain will absolutely be worth it in the end!

To summarize:
• Choose a great surgeon
• If you tell me something hurts I will believe you
• It’s probably going to hurt a little
• But it won’t hurt forever
• Your results will be worth it!

In future posts I will detail the many complimentary therapies and treatments that we recommend post operatively to decrease pain and speed recovery.