As a Pain Interventionist, Dr de Villiers is specifically trained to diagnose and treat chronic painful conditions, using some of the latest techniques available.
Nobody, not even your health-care professional, will deny you the right to access to information regarding your medical condition. This also includes your right to make an informed decision regarding available treatment options for the condition you may be suffering from. However, you have an obligation to yourself and you loved-ones, to timeously come to the correct diagnosis and to be offered the most appropriate treatment option.
Making the wrong decision about your medical care, on the grounds of insufficient or incorrect information, can lead to unnecessary cost, anxiety, sometimes permanent harm, and heavens forbid, even death. We therefor strongly advise you not to use this website to self-diagnose.
Use it to gain some insight into the medical conditions, as discussed. This website does not claim to be comprehensive about all possible medical conditions you may suffer from, nor does it claim that the possible treatment options discussed are the only ones available.
Pain is complicated
The actual source of pain in many painful conditions, call it the pain generator if you will, is not as obvious as would appear at first glance. Chronic back pain and neck pain are both very common conditions and are excellent examples to illustrate this point; taking an x-ray of the spine in people over the age of 40 years will most assuredly display noticeable changes that can only be attributed to aging. It is well documented that most of these changes are seldomly associated with pain and therefor, more often than not, do not require any intervention or treatment.
Automatically accepting that the noticeable changes on x-rays are the reason for your pain, can lead to inappropriate (and wasteful) special investigation and unnecessary treatment.
Trust your doctor
It is the responsibility of your health-care professional(s) to establish what condition(s) you are suffering from. This he/she/they will do by examining you and then, if indicated, by requesting further tests or even consulting with other health-care professionals. After gathering and evaluating all relevant information, he/she/they can come to a definitive (or at least a probable) diagnosis; only then can one make a sensible recommendation regarding the most appropriate treatment option for that specific condition.
If you are suffering from moderate to severe pain, especially if it is predominantly severe at night or during periods of rest, or if it is accompanied by symptoms such as fever, general malaise, loss of appetite, unexplained weight loss or if you have a history of cancer, do not hesitate to contact your doctor.