Multi-Disciplinary Pain Center
By Michelle Martin
For too many people, pain has become an everyday part of life. Many people, unable to identify and treat the source of the pain after countless doctor visits, have suffered for years with some form of chronic pain. This type of ongoing pain can affect people's mental and emotional health as well. Many people with chronic pain become dependent upon prescription medications, develop depression, and experience problems in relationships with family and friends.
Sonny Dosanjh, M.D., wants to reassure people with chronic pain that there is hope. He is an ABMS Board Certified Physiatrist (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation) and Emory Fellowship Trained Pain Medicine specialist. He is also the founder, CEO and Chief Medical Officer of Medici Medical Arts, with offices in Buckhead, Dunwoody and Woodstock. An Ambulatory Surgical Center is scheduled to come online in mid-2015.
"Unfortunately, symptoms can be misleading and the cause of the pain may be difficult to diagnose. Pain is the body's alarm system and an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience, which is associated with tissue damage and indicates inflammation. When pain is masked with pharmaceuticals, such as painkillers — rather than getting to the source of the pain — it's essential to take time with patients to have a thorough understanding of their symptoms, history and physical exam to get to the source of the pain. It is of the utmost importance to treat patients with compassion, and build a relationship of trust and communication," he says.
Dr. Dosanjh, a native of Canada, came to the United States in 2007 to complete his residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Emory University after earning his medical degree in England. In addition, Dr. Dosanjh completed a Multi-Disciplinary Pain Fellowship with the Emory University Anesthesia Department. Dr. Dosanjh's extensive specialty training, combined with his own interest and background in Sports Medicine as a professional football player and martial artist, brings a unique perspective to pain management. "I have always dreamed of opening a multi-disciplinary pain and sports medicine center," he says.
Medici Medical Arts offers a multi-disciplinary medical approach to diagnosing and treating chronic neck, spine, back, nerve, muscle and joint disorders, along with pain associated with automobile accidents, sports injuries, work-related injuries, long-term illness, concussions and migraine headaches.
Dr. Dosanjh incorporates physical medicine, rehabilitation, intervention, minimally invasive procedures, cutting-edge stem cell and platelet-rich plasma injections, and overall wellness to provide integrative pain solutions using limited pharmaceutical assistance.
The team at Medici Medical Arts includes a Neurologist, Psychiatrist, Physical Therapist and Nurse Practitioner, and all of his ancillary staff. "At other medical centers, it's easy for patients to get lost in the system because they're referred out to one doctor after another. Our staff of experienced specialists, therapists and practitioners in one central facility allows us to come together easily for consultations and develop integrated treatment options for our patients," he says.
The Medici Medical Arts team provides comprehensive diagnostic services, including X-ray, MRI, ultrasound and electromyography. Treatment options include traditional, alternative and advanced protocols like epidural injections, radiofrequency ablation, spinal cord stimulators, botox for migraines and spasticity, stem cell therapy and many others. A complete listing of Conditions Treated and Procedures Performed is available on their website at www.MediciMedicalArts.com.
As Dr. Dosanjh explains, a Treatment Plan is developed according to patients' individual needs based on a complete medical evaluation, patient history and imaging, if necessary. "It's important to spend time with patients and show them that you care simply by listening to them," he says. "Patients often are misdiagnosed because of the limited time they have with their providers."
To make matters worse, Dr. Dosanjh explains that misdiagnosis can have life-altering effects if unnecessary medications or surgery are recommended. He recalls two instances when patients came to Medici Medical Arts after having been diagnosed by other doctors with serious issues that could have had long-term effects on their health and quality of life. In both instances, Dr. Dosanjh identified the source of the pain and treated the pain successfully without surgery. "Not every diagnosis and treatment is simple," he adds, "but it's important to pay attention to patients and to do a thorough physical exam. I try to treat my patients like I would my own family —with compassionate, focused care."
Dr. Dosanjh also emphasizes nutrition and wellness as part of patients' evaluation. "No matter what your condition, proper nutrition and exercise play a big role in overall health," he says, adding that vitamin and electrolyte deficiencies can be a major contributor to pain. Lab tests, performed on patients, will indicate any vitamin, mineral or electrolyte deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, diabetes, presence of narcotics or other issues. Dr. Dosanjh may recommend physical therapy to help patients increase range of motion, improve flexibility or build strength so that they can begin an exercise program. "An increase in lean body mass correlates to a more successful outcome, so we stress nutrition and exercise as the fundamentals to overall health and wellness," he says.
Other health issues associated with chronic pain can include depression and addiction. As Dr. Dosanjh explains, depression brought on by pain can result in even further problems. "Women and men alike can experience diminished sex drive and fatigue as a result of depression, which can affect intimacy and relationships," he says. People may also become dependent upon narcotics and other pharmaceuticals used to deal with the pain. A dependency upon narcotics may lead to financial problems as well. "It's imperative that we are mindful of all the different issues that people can develop as a result of living with pain," Dr. Dosanjh says. "At Medici Medical Arts, we work with patients to not only identify and treat the source of their pain but also to help them understand the source of their depression and/or addiction, and break the cycle."
Dr. Dosanjh works with Dr. Blazen Draguljic, (M.D.), a specialist in psychiatry addictionology, to help patients sort through the mental, physical and dependency issues often associated with chronic pain. Whenever possible, Dr. Draguljic and Dr. Dosanjh like to involve family members to get their perspective on how patients' pain, depression and addiction have impacted not only the individual patients but also their loved ones. "In most cases, people don't recognize how their behavior affects everyone around them; spouses usually suffer the most," says Dr. Dosanjh. "Having different perspectives offers a better understanding so that we can develop the best treatment options. While the patients are the ones experiencing pain, they're not the only ones suffering. Successful treatment involves a team effort and support network to return patients to renewed health and quality of life."
Medici Medical Arts
Palisades at West Paces
3200 Downwood Circle, N.W., Suite 410
Atlanta, GA 30327
7100 Peachtree Dunwoody, Suite 100
Atlanta, GA 30328
203 Woodpark Place, Building B-200
Woodstock, GA 30188