Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease

Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease

Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease is one of the leading causes of low back pain in aging adults worldwide. Dr. Patterson explains more about the condition and a few treatments that we offer here at Nevada Advanced Pain Specialists.

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Mental Health Awareness

Mental Health Awareness

Did you know that those with chronic pain are THREE TIMES more likely to develop depression and anxiety than those without chronic pain? It is also linked to worsened mental health status across a variety of mental health conditions- chronic pain is shown to increase chances of severe anxiety, bipolar disorder, severe depression and PTSD.

We’ve got Margaret Heston-Ashby LMFT to discuss a few tips that you can start right now to improve your mental health and chronic pain.

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The Science Behind CBD


Cannabidiol, or CBD, is and active ingredient in cannabis that is becoming an increasingly popular product being promoted to help chronic pain. This growing industry is expected to hit $23 billion annually in sales by the year 2025. This comes after emerging research has shown that CBD can be an effective and safe treatment for chronic pain, anxiety and epilepsy.

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Serotonin Syndrome


Your nerve cells are constantly in a state of production to create the chemical serotonin which is made from the essential amino acid tryptophan. Serotonin is known to help regulate digestion, body temperature, sleep, bone health, blood clotting and even sexual function. More importantly, serotonin is known to help regulate anxiety and your mood, specifically happiness. It is important that you maintain normal levels of serotonin for all of these conditions to function properly. Low serotonin levels are associated with anxiety, insomnia, and depression. Adversely, high levels of serotonin are associated with osteoporosis, low sex-drive, and nausea.

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Medical Marijuana Resources

Medical Marijuana

Medical marijuana has been a hot topic for years for both legality and health reasons. Even with some remaining nay-sayers, it has become more mainstream every year and currently 33 states permit marijuana use for medical reasons. This number continues to grow on a yearly basis. Majority of Americans support the legalization of marijuana, even though the federal government has labeled it an illegal substance.

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Stem Cell Technology Discussion

Stem cell discussion

Dr. Patterson sits down with patient, Jarred, to discuss his experience being treated with stem cell technology.

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Pain Pumps can be a Great Solution to Chronic Pain

Pain Pumps

Pain pumps can be a great solution to chronic pain. CloeDedman, PA-C, discusses this option to get off of oral medications and still receive pain relief without the side effects with a real pain pump patient.

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Avoiding Withdrawals While Eliminating Opioids


A new FDA-approved, non-invasive neurostimulation device is proven to significantly lower effects of opioid withdrawal. The Sparrow Device is worn like a hearing aid, with little to no discomfort but has big impact on those seeking to eliminate opioid use. Dr. Patterson discusses the weaning process, effects, and rapid timeline with our first Sparrow device patient.

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Understanding Conscious Sedation

Woman in the hospital before surgery

As a patient at Nevada Advanced Pain Specialists, it might be recommended that you undergo a procedure to confirm the cause and/or help alleviate your chronic pain. Diagnostic procedures by insurance protocols must be done under local anesthesia with no sedation. Unfortunately, as a patient, you have no choice in these scenarios on your anesthesia care. Therapeutic procedures on the other hand, you and your provider may decide on what type of sedation is best for you. Your main options will be local anesthesia, local anesthesia with oral sedation, and local anesthesia with IV conscious sedation. Deep sedation and/or general anesthesia will only be options for surgical procedures.

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Integrating Mindfulness

Woman sitting peacefully meditating

In recent years, scientists and theorists have done clinical research to evaluate the long-term benefits of practicing mindfulness and meditation. The research has led to many insightful discoveries. We now know that the long-term benefits of practicing mindfulness and meditation include (but are not limited to): stress reduction, minimizing chronic pain, reducing anxiety, lowering the probability of symptoms of depression, enhancing brain performance, improving sleep, reducing risk of heart attack and stroke, and improving overall well-being.

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What is Intraoperative Neuromonitoring?

Illustration of a brain

A globally growing subspecialty in the neurology space, intraoperative neuromonitoring, or IONM, assesses the functional integrity of the brain, brain stem, spinal cord, or peripheral nerves during a medical procedure. Neuromonitoring protects the nervous system by having real time access to any changes in the way your nerves behave and communicate with one another. Neuromonitoring can alert both the surgeon and anesthesiologist of potential injury in real time to allow for preventative modification. Use of neuromonitoring can prevent injuries such as paralysis, muscle weakness, loss of hearing, vision and feeling.

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Coping with COVID

Cartoon silhouette of a woman meditating

As part of our Coping with COVID series, we’ve decided to weigh in on how to help someone struggling through this pandemic. Coping is a collaboration between the body, mind and spirit. Here are 7 ways to get you mentally, physically and emotionally in a better place to get through COVID-19 pandemic.

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Self-Care Between Medical Massages

Woman massaging her neck

If everyone could get a massage twice a week, the world would be a better place. Since most of us can’t visit a massage therapist that often, here are some self-care tips to add to your daily routine between massage sessions. These recommendations only take 5 minutes to do.

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Benefits of Medical Massage

Woman getting a massage

Who says medical treatments can’t be enjoyable? A medical massage is enjoyable and can improve your health. Massage therapy can help patients who suffer from chronic pain and is being incorporated into pain management programs nationwide. Getting a medical massage on a regular basis can help chronic pain patients achieve periods of pain freedom, decrease pain levels, improve sleep cycles and overall can improve their quality of life.

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Beginner's Guide to Essential Oils

Essential oil bottles sitting next to purple flowers

Essential oils have been used medicinally for centuries. Some researchers think that the application of myrrh as a wound salve was the first known use of an essential oil by ancient Egyptians in 1550 BC. Essential oils increased in popularity in the 1970’s and have been growing much more rapidly in the past few years with a rise in consumers opting for natural remedies. The trend seems to have no end in sight. In the US, the essential oils market is estimated to increase from $4.7 billion in 2019 to $7.3 billion by 2024 according to

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Radiofrequency Ablations for Lower Back Pain

woman with lower back pain

Lower back pain is something that almost everyone will experience at some point in their lifetime. In fact, lower back pain is the number one cause of disability in the United States. Lower back pain may resolve itself, however when it does not and lasts longer than 3 months it is considered chronic pain and should be addressed by a professional.

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CGRPs: The Newest Trend in Preventing Migraines


Did you know that chronic migraines are one of the leading causes of disability in America? Migraine sufferers know that once a migraine hits, it becomes unbearable. During a migraine attack, they can have sensitivities to light, sound, and even smell which can be torture. Unfortunately, a lot of migraineurs have found few options that can prevent the onset of a migraine and they simply have to wait it out. Thankfully a new treatment option to help prevent migraines has become available. This new treatment option is a class of medications that are known as CGRP blockers.

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Comprehensive Pain Care: The Biopsychosocial Model

women smiling

Nevada Advanced Pain Specialists is always striving to treat our patients with the most comprehensive approach to treating acute and chronic pain. We realize that all patient’s pain is not the same. Pain is complex and multiple factors can cause or exacerbate a patient’s pain condition.

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October is Physical Therapy Month!

butterfly stretch illustration

October is Physical Therapy month, and that means spreading awareness of the benefits of physical therapy. According to Burke Rehabilitation Hospital, here are 10 reasons why physical therapy is beneficial.

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Treatment for Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

before mild procedure illustration

Do you find yourself leaning over to reduce the pain in your lower back? You may be one of the millions of people nationwide suffering from Lumbar Spinal Stenosis (LSS). This condition may cause lower extremity numbness, tingling, and/or pain which can dramatically limit mobility.

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SI Joint Pain Relief From CornerLoc

cornerlock pelvis illustration

Dr. Patterson is always learning the most up-to-date procedures for our patients and we are excited to now be offering the CornerLoc™ procedure. Lower back pain effects millions of Americans every year and is the second most common cause of disability in the country. Of those that suffer from lower back pain, 20% are caused by the sacroiliac joint (SI). If you’ve had a spinal fusion the chance of the SI joint causing lower back pain then jumps up to 40%.

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Intrathecal Drug Therapy

cornerlock pelvis illustration

Intrathecal pumps (ITPs) are devices used in the treatment of patients in chronic pain. ITPs are automated pieces of equipment that are programmed to deliver medication into the spinal fluid through a small catheter. These pumps have been proven effective in treating cancer pain, severe back pain, neuropathic pain, and muscle spasticity.

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The Ever Elusive Sleep

woman sleeping

It is very common for people living with chronic pain to have sleep problems including difficulty falling asleep and/or staying asleep. According to Dr. Michael Lewandowsi, “There are many ways chronic pain contributes to sleep problems. The most common include the injury itself, nighttime pain, medications, decreased daytime activity, inconsistency in schedules and routines, weight gain, and problems with mood and anxiety” (2006)[1]. Furthermore, when sleep is inadequate and interrupted, our bodies lose out on necessary opportunities for physical and psychological repair and restoration. Not surprisingly, poor sleep affects other aspects of our lives such as difficulty regulating emotions, mood disturbance, difficulty making decisions, and poor motor control, all of which can result in a number of other complications and stressors.

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An Introduction to Cupping

cupping illustration

Cupping is one of the oldest forms of manual therapy, originating in China thousands of years ago. It is known to relieve sore or tight muscles among other benefits by activating blood flow. For the treatment, the therapist will place a glass or a plastic cup onto the skin and will create suction like a vacuum. The suction can also be created with either a hand suction pump or a burning cotton wool ball. The skin, muscle, and fascia will then draw up into the cup. Placement of the cups will depend on where the person is feeling tightness or pain in the muscle.

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Craniosacral Therapy: The Power of Touch


CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle, non-invasive, hands-on healing treatment that focuses on the wave-like rhythmic pulse that goes through the entire body. This therapy stems from osteopathy, which is an approach that emphasizes the role of the musculoskeletal system in health and disease and was pioneered and developed by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger, a clinical researcher and Professor of Biomechanics at Michigan State University.

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Vertiflex Spine- Superion Indirect Decompression System (IDS)

vertiflex illustration

Looking to escape the poor air quality of Fresno and related health problems, Roberta Tatum and her husband moved to the Reno area about 7 months ago. After making the move, Roberta, who also had chronic back pain for years, started experiencing unexplained leg and groin pain. Luckily, her pain doctor from Fresno had studied under Dr. Patterson and recommended our practice to her. Roberta was diagnosed with moderate to severe Lumbar Spinal Stenosis (LSS) and had no success with conservative treatments for her leg pain. Dr. Patterson then recommended the Superion Indirect Decompression System (IDS). This recently approved treatment option is safe and effective for leg pain caused by lumbar stenosis.

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Ways To Close the Gate on Pain By Margaret Heaton

Margaret Heaton

Living with chronic pain can be a real pain. It impacts many areas of our lives and can become very distressing. A very popular pain management theory, The Gate Control Theory of pain, outlines the interplay between pain and all of our aspects of being (physical, mental, emotional, behavioral, and social). Put in a nutshell, The Gate Control Theory explains how pain signals flow from our nerve endings to our brain and from our brain (i.e. thoughts and emotions) down to our nerve endings. This theory suggests that we can open a “gate” to allow for more pain signals to travel through our body or close the “gate” to reduce the flow of pain signals. We can open and close the “gate” by attending to our aspects of being. Let’s take a closer look at the interplay between our five realms of being and chronic pain:

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Jamie Pribyl PT, DPT, MTC, Speaks on Dry Needling Treatment

dry needling procedure

Dry needling involves putting acupuncture needles (thin monofilament needles) into muscles, ligaments, tendons, subcutaneous tissues, and scar tissues to get them to relax and release. Originally, dry needling was used only to enter into trigger points of dense outer tissue, but the practice has expanded since it has been found to be beneficial for multiple tissues. When manual techniques are not effective in relaxing or releasing tissues, dry needling is a nice alternative treatment.

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New Treatment for Varicose Veins

varicose after

The ClosureFast™ procedure is a minimally invasive treatment that uses radiofrequency (RF) energy to effectively treat patients with varicose veins or chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). Because the valves in the legs cannot be repaired, the only alternative is to re-route the blood flow from the diseased veins to the healthy veins.

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Minimally Invasive procedure for SI Joint Pain

pelvis cornerloc

The sacroiliac joints (SI) are the foundation of the spine, located at the junctions of the sacrum and ilium on each side. These complex joints, composed of systems of ligaments and multiplanar joint surfaces, transmit the forces exerted through the spine from the upper body to the legs. The SI joint is designed to absorb some shock forces, but is only designed for minute motion. Instability in the SI Joint is a major pain generator in some patients.

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Intracept Procedure

intracept procedure illustration

Chronic low back pain (CLBP) impacts 30M people in the US with another 900K new occurrences each year. Low back pain is the most expensive occupational disorder in the US and a leading cause of disability worldwide. While both non-surgical and surgical options are available for people suffering with CLBP, the majority of CLBP sufferers do not get adequate relief from non-surgical treatments and are not surgical candidates.

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Physical Therapy on the Go: Exercises You Can Do Anywhere By Jamie Pribyl

woman stretching

Summer is officially here, and with it comes vacations and inconsistent scheduling, which may make it difficult to make it to your physical therapy appointments or keep up with regular activity. A strong core is essential to avoiding back injuries, and subsequently pain. Often times, back pain is due somewhat in part to having weak abdominal muscles and improper spinal alignment. By increasing your core strength with these on-the-go exercises, you’ll be less likely to rely on other treatments for pain, such as medication.

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Nevada Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Act

opiod pills

On January 1, 2018, Assembly Bill 474 was implemented in the state of Nevada in an attempt to reduce the number of deaths related to opioid overdoses and stop opioid abuse. In a recent study, Nevada was ranked as the fourth highest state for opioid related deaths.

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A note from Jamie Pribyl PT, DPT, MTC


So, you have been referred to physical therapy by your doctor. Now what? It already hurts to do your everyday activities and the LAST thing you want to do is exercise because it’s only going to make you hurt more, right? WRONG. First off, I understand you have chronic pain. I understand that it hurts for you to sit, to walk, and to lie down. And I understand that you may have tried physical therapy in the past without success. All I ask is that you clear your mind and be ready to experience therapy designed around you. I’m here to try to help you feel better, not worse and that begins with you telling me what aggravates your pain.

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Vertos Medical - MILD

vertos mild illustration

Lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) is a condition where the spinal canal narrows and compresses the spinal cord nerves in your lower back. As we age, the natural wear and tear on our spine can lead to a number of contributing factors that cause the narrowing of the spinal canal – thickening of ligament tissue, formation of excess bone, or compression/bulging of the discs.

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Mindfullness Meditation & Chronic Pain, Integrating Mindfullness, Common Script By Margaret Heaton


In recent years, researchers, scientists, and theorists have been conducting clinical research on the effects of mindfulness and meditation practices and their findings are confirming the long-term benefits of regular mediation and mindfulness practice. These benefits include, but are not limited to: stress reduction, minimizing chronic pain, reducing anxiety, lowering the probability of symptoms of depression, enhancing brain performance, improving sleep, reducing risk of heart attack and stroke, and improving overall well-being (Bergland, C., 2015;

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Vertiflex Spine - Superion Indirect Decompression

spine vertiflex diagram

Back and leg pain affects millions of Americans every year, causing loss of mobility, lost work, and frustration. The thought of invasive back surgery, with possible problems such as surgical scars, lengthy recovery time and time off from work, is a difficult prospect. However, there is now a treatment option that provides patients with new alternatives for a pain-free life.

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CDC Opioid Prescribing Guidelines: One Year Later

opioid pills

In March of 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released guidelines for prescribing opioids. These guidelines were written to give primary care physicians recommendations on how to treat chronic pain outside of active cancer treatment, palliative care, and end-of-life care.

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Minimally Invasive Treatments for Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

lss spine diagram

LSS is a degenerative condition of the lumbar spine. With age, the discs between the bones that make up the spine wear down, causing the spinal canal to narrow. In turn, this puts pressure on the lower back. The pressure can lead to the pain in the legs, groin, and buttock.

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Clarity Science - O.P.T.I.M.A.G - Pain Study

clinical trial

O.P.T.I.M.A. – G stands for Observing Pain Transdermal Treatments – Improving and Managing All GI Symptoms. This is study from Clarity Science for patients who have been prescribed a topical/transdermal pain medication. The study aims to evaluate their experiences and perceptions. Pain and other related symptoms will be evaluated by patient feedback.

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Over 90% of our facet joint injection patients report improvement in their condition. Over 75% said their condition improved by more than 50%

Over 83% of our epidural patients report improvement in their condition. Over 75% said their condition improved by more than 50%

Overall, 83% of our patients report a better quality of life, 60% report less pain, and 62% report improvement in their function

Ready to come see one of our physicians?