We’re looking forward to meeting you.
Here’s everything you need to know about your first appointment.
Congratulations on taking an important first step on your journey to regaining your life. Our team is very much looking forward to helping you find a treatment plan to manage your pain and improve the quality of your life in big and small ways every day.
This page will give you a sense of what to expect on your first visit, but please don’t hesitate to reach out by phone or email with any questions you might have. We’re here to help.
Upon arrival, you will be greeted by our front office team who will check you in and provide you with a questionnaire about your medical history. Even if you have already filled out the questionnaire online, we suggest arriving approximately fifteen minutes early. If you’re running late, just give us a quick call at (954) 500-PAIN (7246).
Before you see the doctor, a medical assistant will show you to a consultation room, take your vital signs, and go over your medical history and medications. At this point, you are also invited to share any information you may have left off the questionnaire or details about recent symptoms.
In your meeting, you and Dr. DiStefano will take the time to fully discuss your symptoms and medical history. To support her integrated and holistic approach to pain management, Dr. DiStefano will ask a range of questions covering your general health, lifestyle, and—of course—the specifics (type, location, frequency, etc.) of your pain symptoms. In addition, we welcome any and all relevant imaging or reports that you’d like to share. During this conversation, you are invited and encouraged to ask any questions that come to mind. Dr. DiStefano will always be thorough and transparent—providing a full explanation of your condition and the various treatment options—but she welcomes questions and is happy to provide additional detail at any point in the process.
Following the consultation, Dr. DiStefano will develop a customized plan that suits your needs and your lifestyle. The goal of treatment at Pain Management Specialists is to help our patients regain their lives without having to resort to either traditional surgery or ongoing use of narcotics. Instead, we combine minimally invasive procedures with a variety of other modalities to provide a treatment plan that is practical, sustainable, and effective.
Insurance, Authorizations, and Billing
Once your treatment plan has been defined, our administrative team will review it with you and walk through everything you need to know in terms of any prior authorizations as well as insurance coverage and other logistical details. Our goal is to provide a detailed summary of treatment expenses, insurance coverage, and any payment plan information. After this, you will know exactly what your next steps are and will be able to rest easy knowing there won’t be any hidden costs or unexpected bills.
Interventional Procedure Process
If it is determined that an interventional procedure is to be part of your treatment plan, the team at Pain Treatment Specialists will be able to handle all your needs right from the comfort and convenience of our offices.
Our staff are accredited to provide local anesthesia and moderate sedation to ensure your complete comfort. In addition, we have all the necessary equipment to provide continuous monitoring throughout your procedure, ensuring the highest level of safety. Please note that if your procedure requires sedation, you will need to make arrangements for someone to bring you home since you will be unable to drive.
- Scheduling: We’ll set a date for procedure based on your preference and any required insurance authorization.
- Pre-procedure Instructions: We’ll review any changes in your medication regimen or fasting requirements.
- Additional Q&A: We’ll also address any other questions you have.
- Check-in: Our administrative staff will make sure your paperwork is in order.
- Pre-procedure Exam: The medical assistant will take your vitals, review medication and fasting status, and perform a basic physical exam and any diagnostics (e.g., blood sugar and pregnancy tests).
- Pre-operative Interview and Evaluation: Dr. Distefano will go over anesthetic requirements and questions.
- Sedation Administration: If being used, you will be given an IV catheter for fluids and medication.
- Procedure: Procedures done under local anesthesia typically take approximately 15 to 20 minutes while procedures done under sedation usually last about 30 to 45 minutes.
- Recovery: We will monitor you for a few hours after your procedure to ensure you are tolerating fluids, have stable vital signs, and have minimal pain.
- Check-out: You will be provided with instructions for at-home care as well as contact information in case you have any questions. At this time, we’ll also schedule your follow-up appointment.
- Return Home: Please remember that you will need a ride home from your procedure.
- Follow-up Appointment: Depending on your specific situation, we will schedule a follow-up for you to see Dr. Distefano in 4 to 6 weeks after your procedure.