The mission of the Acute Pain and Regional Service is to provide excellence in patient care and resident education. We are a consultative service and provide 24 hour in-house coverage 7 days a week for patients with acute post-operative and posttraumatic pain. Our team consists of an attending physician with regional anesthesia expertise, anesthesia residents, and a nurse practitioner. We work closely with surgical, medical and ICU services to provide comprehensive acute pain care utilizing a full range of interventional techniques and medication management.
Prior to the launch of the new Acute Pain and Regional Service in July, the Pain Service existed as a combined Inpatient Pain Service which included the inpatient Chronic Pain service. Comprehensive, acute pain management, however, requires specific skill sets possessed by anesthesiologists, such as epidural and peripheral nerve catheter management and placement. We now have a separate, dedicated team focused on the treatment of acute perioperative pain. Since it's inception, the new Acute Pain and Regional Service has grown exponentially, underscoring the growing need at UCI Medical Center.
We incorporate the latest ultrasound guided and nerve stimulation technology for placing and managing a wide range of peripheral nerve blocks and peripheral nerve catheters. Ultrasound guidance increases patient satisfaction by precisely localizing nerves and maximizes patient safety by providing real-time visualization. We also provide and manage thoracic epidural catheters which are placed for patients undergoing extensive abdominal and thoracic surgery as well as patients suffering from acute traumatic chest injuries. All patients with indwelling catheters are closely monitored and treated on a daily basis by the Acute Pain Service.
Finally, we act as a consult service for medical and surgical teams. We assist with complex pharmacological management including IV and oral pain medications. The service works closely with the primary provider team in developing an effective oral pain regimen for discharge home. We utilize a wide variety of medications including opioids, anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxants, topical agents, and antineuropathic medications. Patients who may need additional pain management expertise following discharge can be referred to our outpatient pain clinic located at the Gottschalk Medical Plaza in Irvine.
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