Using a combination of narcotics management, Physical Therapy and Behavioral Therapy, Dr. Mugabe Walker in Internal Medicine has seen successful treatment of chronic pain.

The combination of managing pain narcotics with services like physical and behavioral therapy, has helped patients recoup from chronic pain in an efficient and effective way.  Patients are also able to receive all services within the San Luis Valley Health system, as services like Physical and Behavioral Therapy are offered consistently.

Five years ago, Kenneth Strandberg, 59, hurt his back. Dr. Walker used exercises such as stretching, in combination with teaming up with the Physical and Behavioral Therapy teams to help treat Mr. Strandberg.  “I’m grateful of what he was able to do,” said Strandberg. “I feel like a new man.”

Meanwhile, another SLV Health provider, Dr. Sarah McAlpine, has been very active in organizing all valley providers to establish narcotic contracts with patients to prevent narcotics abuse across the systems. 

McAlpine also chairs the Drug Abuse Taskforce of the San Luis Valley, a group that brings physicians, pharmacists, law enforcement officers, and community stakeholders together to discuss the problem of prescription drug abuse throughout the Valley.

“This is becoming standard of care because it is more successful than using pain medications like in the past,” said Dr. McAlpine. “This is an approach that is used by all the providers here as well as throughout the other organizations in the valley.”

Patients like Strandberg are the latest to benefit from this new approach.  Strandberg was more than satisfied at the way his treatment was delivered and as he indicated, has been pleased with the results.

“By treating our patients with chronic pain in a wiser more comprehensive manner we are improving their care and improving the health of the whole community,” Dr. McAlpine said. “Our prescription drug abuse has decreased in the valley as a consequence of this movement.”

Dr. McAlpine can be reached by calling 719-589-8082

Dr. Walker can be reached by calling 719-589-8003

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