Division of Neurosurgery

Neurosurgical Pain Service

The Neurological Pain Service program in the University of Arizona Department of Surgery offers many patients the hope of pain relief when other attempts at pain management fail or are inappropriate.

Patients who suffer chronic pain from cancer, spinal injury and other conditions or diseases may benefit from neurological pain management treatments. These treatments seek to mitigate pain not through intervention at the site of injury or disease but where pain is actually experienced: the neural pathways and processing centers of the spine and brain.

Advanced Pain Treatment Technologies

While treatment technologies and successful results were limited in decades past, medical innovations in recent years now give surgeons a wide range of neurosurgical pain management treatments and strategies, often applied with life-changing outcomes.

Electrical Stimulation
Electrical stimulation is one of the best-known approaches to neurosurgical pain service. Delivering precise levels of electrical current to specific areas of the spinal cord, motor cortex or deep brain can often "jam" pain pathways, blocking the experience of pain.

Brain Lesions
An older approach -- creating lesions in specific areas of the brain -- can yield the same pain-blocking results. Surgical technology has advanced considerably in this area, and lesions are now made with probes heated using radiofrequency currents, allowing surgeons to precisely control temperature and treatment times and thus the sizes of lesions created.

Intraspinal Drug Delivery
Neurosurgical pain management treatments also include delivering drugs directly into the spinal cord. By delivering concentrated pain management drugs right alongside neural pathways, surgeons can forego large, systemwide doses that may cause considerable side effects.

These are only a handful of the many pain management treatments available to today's leading neruosurgeons.

Make an Appointment

For the best neurosurgical care in Tucson, Southern Arizona and the Southwest, you can make an appointment by calling us at (520) 694-1001.