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Many people will be surprised to learn that the phrase ‘First, do no harm’ is not actually found in the Hippocratic Oath. The oath itself is a historic document that outlines the ethical responsibilities of doctors to their patients. Meanwhile, that famous phrase is actually found in the Hippocratic Corpus, a larger collection of works by the ancient Greek physician.

Why do I find this interesting? Essentially, I think we’ve all come to accept that some harm must come to patients in the course of treatment for any condition. Life-saving medications, for example, often have unhealthy and unwanted side effects. For some, this is a necessary, unavoidable evil. In other cases, I think it’s time to examine our understanding of ‘necessary evils,’ and decide which are truly necessary and which are not.

This discussion is particularly applicable when it comes to pain management. In some cases, painkilling medications are indispensable and can help patients move forward with the rehabilitation process. However, long-term pain relief through drug use is damaging to the body and counterintuitive to the healing process.

I feel it is our duty to patients to offer ways to reduce the need for painkilling medications by offering a number of techniques for pain management. Toward that end, our facility offers the following treatment options:

By providing an approach that brings together traditional care with holistic practices, and crosses Western medicine with ancient Eastern techniques, our office offers conservative, healthy pain management.

I’ve talked a lot about ineffective and needless back surgeries in this blog. The medical community has actually coined a term for the phenomenon—they call it ‘Failed Back Surgery Syndrome’ and it is characterized by chronic back and/or leg pain following spinal surgery.

As part of our commitment to healthy pain management strategies, the staff at Monmouth Pain and Rehab views surgery not as a first line of treatment, but rather as an option of last resort. Remember, ‘first, do no harm’? That famous mission statement is an everyday reality for our practitioners and patients.

Additionally, Hippocrates spoke of compassion and sympathy for patients. The Hippocratic Oath reads: “I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.”*

I think that sometimes patients feel that there is a barrier between themselves and their healthcare practitioners. So much of the work that has gone into creating our medical office here at Monmouth Pain and Rehabilitation Center has centered on eliminating this sense of obstruction.

Our office treats a number of conditions, including auto accident injuries, sports injuries, back and neck pain, and herniated discs. We also provide solutions for painful illnesses such as fibromyalgia and arthritis. Please contact our office to learn more about pain management in Oceanport, NJ.

*“The Hippocratic Oath: Modern Version” Doctor’s Diaries. WGBH Educational Foundation.