Crenshaw Pain Management Center serving Crenshaw, surrounding counties

Published 8:38 pm Sunday, March 5, 2023

Local veteran and Burnout resident, Steve Odom, suffers from chronic neck pain and has traveled as far away as Montgomery, Birmingham, and even farther to receive pain management services through the Veterans Administration.

Before hearing about Crenshaw Community Hospital’s new pain management center, Odom was facing a journey to Pensacola, Florida to receive much-needed care.

In 2022, the hospital partnered with Pain Management Group out of Findlay, Ohio and opened the Crenshaw Pain Management Center on July 27, offering services to Crenshaw County and the surrounding areas.

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Now, veterans like Odom and others experiencing pain, can receive treatment closer to home than ever before.

“There are different types of pain management,” said Clinic Manager Bridget McVay. “There are doctors who just write prescriptions. There are other doctors who are against writing prescriptions, and they will only do a procedure. We’re kind of like the happy medium between the two. We prescribe if needed.

“We’re here to take over for primary care physicians. The State is not playing when it comes to pain medication. They’re not wanting doctors to write them a whole lot. So, our goal is to educate doctors and patients. People don’t realize opioids are usually for acute pain, not chronic pain.”

According to McVay, the center works with local manufacturers to make employees performing repetitive motions aware of physical therapy and procedures which can relieve pain caused by those motions.

“We’ve got a lot of plants around here where employees are doing repetitive motions and that can cause them pain,” McVay said. “Our goal is to get them out of pain. We’ll work out a plan for whatever best suits them.”

Odom said he has received pain management at several other centers. From his experience, VA patients often start with pain management treatments, and many are not even aware the center is available so close to home.

“How the VA works is they start off with pain management when someone is hurting,” Odom said. “I’ve been to several centers in my life. In my experience [Crenshaw] is better than some of the bigger places. The VA was going to send me to Pensacola, but I called and told them about this one and they swapped my referral to right here. A lot of veterans don’t even know there is a pain management center in the area.”

In addition to physical therapy and medications, the center offers injections — pain blocks or epidurals — depending on what is best suited to patient needs. The center works with most insurance plans and also accepts VA patients.

“The VA can send benefit referrals for our veterans,” McVay said. “We’re doing whatever we can to help them with the process. We also accept adult Medicaid, Medicare, Blue Cross and Blue shield, as well as most insurance plans.”

Patients in need of pain management services can ask for physician referrals, but the center does also take self-referrals, McVay explained.

“We do require patients to have a primary care physician, but not on their first visit,” she said. “If they do not have one, we tell them they need to get established with someone so we can coordinate their care.”

The center offers services and treatment for conditions including arthritis pain, back and neck pain, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, headaches, muscle spasm, nerve damage, Shingles pain, and other painful conditions.

For more information, call (334) 335-1112.