Newbridge Blog

Topics relating to Pain Prevention, Treating Pain & Pain Management

Best summer exercises for people with back pain

Best summer exercises for people with back pain

For people with bad back pain participating in summer time activities and exercises can be daunting. On the other hand, many symptoms of bad back pain can be relieved to some degree with physical activity.


Loads of developments offer a pool as part of the HOA amenities but local YMCAs are a good option too. In many cases your local Y will also offer swimming lessons and water based exercise classes. Water is great for rehabilitation as it helps take the pressure off the joints and enables patients to break a sweat while also taking a load of weight off the body.swimming_for pain relief

If classes seem like a bit of a stretch at this point in your rehabilitation schedule then simply wading water at your own pace might appeal to you.

Caution beach-bound vacationers: Easing into a water exercise regime by going to a swimming pool is usually better than jumping straight into the ocean as tides and waves could put unwanted strain on your joints and muscles.

Outdoor yoga:

Yoga has many benefits including improved breathing, strength and flexibility. Contrary to popular belief yoga is not just for the ultra fit or flexible it is for those aiming to achieve mindfulness in physical activity and awareness of the mind and body connection. The fitness benefit is an added afterthought.

Summer is a great time to start yoga if you’ve never tried it before because there are plenty of free outdoor yoga classes offering beginner sessions. Here are a few places to check out what’s going on yoga wise:

Southern Maryland yoga on the wharf. This free activity can be taken at your own pace.

Frederick in partnership with Sol Yoga do free classes with “Yoga on the Creek” Thursday mornings during the summer.

Low impact exercises are the key. You’ll get the most benefit from these summer exercises by ensuring you listen to your body and take every exercise at your own pace.

*Always talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise regime.


Barbara: Featured Success Story

Barbara: Featured Success Story

Barbara presented to our Frederick office with post-laminectomy syndrome (aka failed back surgery syndrome) causing lower back pain that radiated down her legs.

Read Barbara’s Q&A.

What was the nature/cause of your pain?:

I had lower back and leg pain due to complications from back surgery.

How did your condition affect your life?:

I couldn’t sit or stand up for more than 10 minutes. I experienced throbbing pain while standing up. I was forced to retire from teaching as I was unable to stand the 6 hours a day I had to. I couldn’t sleep more than 4 hours as the pain was waking me up. I had no sexual desire, no social life due to pain, and buttock pain also.

How did treatment improve your life?:

Spinal injections, along with the pain medication gave me relief.

How would you describe your experience with Newbridge Spine & Pain Center?:

All front office assistants, office manager,  nurses, Drs. and Carlton McClellan are my God-saviors with their marvelous support, understanding, attention, and patience that I don’t see at other places.

What advice would you give someone else with your condition or symptoms?:

Be honest and speak up. Firmly explain your frustration with pain and be sure to give a weekly summary of what you have been doing and how you try to work through the pain in order for the doctors to understand you better.

Don’t wait too long to take your medication if pain is intolerant. Of course, follow the pain dosages as prescribed.

If you experience similar pain due to complications after back surgery we can help contact us to arrange an appointment with one of our experienced physicians in your local area.

If we’ve helped you please share your success story.


Rudy Medical Center Prince Frederick

Rudy Medical Center Prince Frederick

New Medical Building in Prince Frederick Officially Opens Doors

Ceremonial Ribbon Cutting and Open House Held

Prince Frederick, Maryland – June 14, 2016 – Newbridge Spine & Pain Center, a Southern Maryland medical practice exclusively dedicated to pain management, held its grand opening ceremony last Tuesday, June 7th 2016.

The opening ceremony revealed the name of the new Prince Frederick medical building, “Rudy Medical Center”. The building honors longtime employee and Nurse Anesthetist, Rudy Ocampo, CRNA.

Mr. Ocampo, CRNA is one of a team of anesthetists and anesthesiologists providing patients with the option for monitored anesthesia (sedation) during pain management procedures such as; epidural steroid injections, nerve blocks and radiofrequency ablations.

Rudy Medical Center is a state-of-the-art facility located at 80 Sherry Lane, Prince Frederick. The building, which is home to Newbridge Spine & Pain Center and Newbridge Surgery Center of Prince Frederick, was designed to beautifully complement the style and charm of the city of Prince Frederick.

Dr. Greesh John, M.D., one of the clinic’s physicians, states, “Patients have already commented that the new building has enhanced their visit experience. Not only do we offer the most sophisticated pain treatments available anywhere but we now do so in a spacious, modern and comfortable atmosphere.”

The new building solidifies the company’s commitment to serving Southern Maryland pain patients by hosting both the pain management office, where patients are seen for consults, and the procedure suite, where patients are treated with out-patient procedures for a full range of pain conditions.

About Newbridge Spine & Pain Center

Newbridge Spine & Pain Center has helped thousands of patients experience effective, long-lasting relief from

acute and chronic pain.  By incorporating powerful, sophisticated pain-relieving treatments into customized plans of care, our pain management experts provide patients with the ability to return to living an active and healthy lifestyle.

Some of the many conditions we successfully treat include back and neck pain, spinal cord disorders, cancer pain, auto & work injuries, fibromyalgia, arthritic pain and many other painful conditions.  Additional information is available at


Celebrating our Nurses

Celebrating our Nurses

In honor of National Nurses Week 6-12 May 2016 we wanted to highlight our Nurses with some profiles of their own.

A big THANK YOU for all the work you do in compassionately caring for our patients.

Kristina Bell, RN – Sr. Clinical Manager

Proofs (57)
If you could have any superpower what would it be
? Invisibility

What is your favorite quote? “Try not to be a man of success, but a man of value” A. Einstein

Where (or when) would you go in a time machine? 1950s-1960s

How long have you been with Newbridge ? 5 1/2 years

What do you enjoy most about nursing? Giving comfort and understanding to those who truly need it

Why do you choose to work in pain management? Patients in chronic pain need special care and understanding, I see that care and compassion in the staff at Newbridge. I am proud to be a part of this team!

Sarah Koenig, RN – Waldorf

Sarah Koenigh RNHow long have you worked at Newbridge? 3 years

What is your favorite quote? “Whoever said diamonds are a girls best friend, never owned a dog.”–unknown

If you could go back in time where would you go? I would go be a nurse during civil war, boy did they need more!

What do you enjoy most about nursing? I enjoy getting to know our patients and watch their improvement.

What superpower would you most want? The super power I would like to have is animal control where I could communicate with animals.

Why do you choose to work in pain management? Pain can really change a person. I truly believe helping one decrease their pain can improve their entire quality of life.

Jean Heveron, RN – Prince Frederick

Jean Heveron, RNWhere would you go in a time machine? This is a hard one to answer. I believe in fate, but there are things I wish I could change and people I wish I could save. There are historic figures I would love to meet. If I had one trip, one time to visit I would go to Ancient Egypt so I could know first hand how the pyramids were built.

What’s your favorite quote? “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

What superpower would you love to have? I would love to be able to fly. I am scared of heights, but when I see a bird soaring high above the trees I cannot help but think how free they must feel.

How long have you been with Newbridge? 10 months

What do you love about nursing? Patient education – knowledge is power

Why do you choose to work in pain management? This position gives me an opportunity to do all of the things I love: educate patients, provide care pre and post injections and managing patient care.

Michele Farris, RN – Frederick, MD

Michele Farris RNWhat do you enjoy most about nursing? The diversity of our field and the opportunities it allows. Each position I took had its own challenges and rewards. Those experiences gave me the chance to grow and evolve as a nurse.

What superpower would you most want? Invisibility to go with the super human hearing my children believe I have.

What’s your favorite quote? “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly”. To me, it means you should never give up fighting for what you want. If you do, you miss out on the reward.

Why do you choose to work in pain management? In 1994, I was in an auto accident. For the next 2 1/2 years, I lived with chronic pain. Went from doctor to doctor, trying to find anyone who would listen to me and help me. So many of those doctors just wanted to write me a prescription, telling me this was all they could do for me. I was finally referred to a clinic specializing in pain management and alternative therapies in 1996. This was a relatively new field with many skeptics but I went with an open mind. I was treated with compassion and for the first time, felt that a doctor was actually listening to me. He found out that I had my initial injury had progressed but no one had ordered any follow up testing. He did some injections which provided a little relief while waiting for my test results. Long story short, I had 4 surgeries in 14 months. Cervical fusion, lumbar fusion, and bilateral thoracic outlet release followed by some intensive physical therapy. In 20 years, I have not had to have any further surgeries. I try to stay active and I listen to my body when it tells me to stop. Based on my personal experience, it gives me a unique perspective and insight to our patients. It allows me to pay it forward.

Kelly Peele, RN – Leesburg

Kelly Peele RNKelly is the newest member of our Nursing team, she’s been with us for 2 months. Kelly has extensive experience in oncology and cardiac nursing.

What’s your favorite quote? “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” Dr Seuss

Why did you become a nurse? From the time I was a little girl, I had always wanted to be a nurse. I have an Aunt who is a retired nurse and growing up I was fascinated with the stories she told of being an ER nurse.

What accomplishment are you most proud of? Being a mom to my two children.


Prince Frederick Pain Clinic Builds Local Facility

Prince Frederick Pain Clinic Builds Local Facility

Prince Frederick, Maryland – March 3rd, 2015 – Newbridge Spine & Pain Center, Prince Frederick’s premier specialist pain management facility has moved.

After 5 years at 70 Sherry Lane, Newbridge Spine & Pain Center founder Jay Gonchigar M.D., decided it was time to plant permanent roots in the community where he and fellow physicians, Chirag Sanghvi M.D. and Greesh John M.D. have successfully treated over 2,500 local pain patients.

The business has constructed a brand new facility at 80 Sherry Lane boasting modern décor with 6 exam rooms, 2 procedure rooms and a state-of-the-art recovery area.

The building will be home to both the pain management office, where patients are seen for consults, and the Procedure suite, where patients are treated with interventional, out-patient, procedures for a full range of pain conditions.

With an administrative and clinical team comprised of over 15 local residents, the new premises is open 5 days a week and marks a serious commitment to providing specialist pain relief to the Prince Frederick community.

“Over the past 5 years we have been honored to provide Prince Frederick and the surrounding community with the highest-quality interventional pain treatments available anywhere. Our new premises demonstrate our commitment to do so for many years to come” states founder Jay Gonchigar, M.D.

The new facility opened 1 March 2016 and is now accepting new patients.


Osteoarthritis and Knee Pain

Osteoarthritis and Knee Pain

As pain providers we see a significant number of patients experiencing knee pain. One of the most common causes of persistent knee pain is osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis is a form of arthritis that affects the joints and the cartilage of the joints, it impacts flexibility and can result in painful bone spurs.

The general symptoms of this type of arthritis are stiffness, pain and swelling of the affected joints is also common.

X-rays and MRI scans can confirm a diagnosis. Sometimes called degenerative joint disease, osteoarthritis cannot be cured, however, pain can often be relieved without the need for invasive surgery.

Pain caused by osteoarthritis in the knee can be alleviated a variety of ways. Newbridge physicians offer injections of corticosteriods which have proven to help inflammation of swollen joints, however, additional options are also available and are commonly used to relieve knee pain.

Supartz injections are specifically designed to help osteoarthritis of the knee joint. Supartz is a solution made of purified sodium hyaluronate. Hyaluronan is a chemical naturally found in the joint tissues and the fluid that fills your joints.

treating knee pain due to osteoarthritisGenicular nerve blocks and radio-frequency. The genicular nerve block procedure is performed to both diagnose the source of pain ascertain effectiveness of an RFA treatment. A successful nerve block procedure generally qualifies a patient for radio-frequency ablation (RFA) of the same nerve this treatment has proven to be an extremely popular and effective long term pain solution.



Post Traumatic Stress and Pain

Post Traumatic Stress and Pain

Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is often known to occur in military veterans and those who have suffered traumatic events involving either physical harm or the threat of physical harm [ Source:]. PTSD is defined as having at least 1 month of re-experiencing trauma symptoms, 3 avoidance symptoms and/or two or more hyperarousal symptoms.

Symptoms of PTSD make it difficult for patients to function throughout their regular daily lives and is often found to co-occur with chronic pain. A recent study published in the Journal of Pain [Vol. 16, No. 10, Oct 2015) found that the two conditions exacerbate each other. Chronic pain intensity was associated with anxiety and anxiety sensitivity, a symptom of PTSD.

We have long known that depression and chronic pain have a similar co-occurrence. However, the study showed that PTSD had a unique profile for hyper-responsiveness and hypersensitivity to pain.

Chronic pain was reported to be 2-5 times more likely to affect PTSD patients than the general population. Conversely chronic pain patients were 2-4 times more likely to exhibit PTSD symptoms than the general population.

PTSD is not the only type of stress that has been linked with pain. Psychological factors of stress have been long known to impact the central nervous system feeding into the stress cycle and exacerbating chronic pain.

The journal of pain article indicates that a reduction in stressful episodes may lead to a reduction in pain over time.

The US Department of Veteran’s affairs suggests that patients experiencing PTSD may benefit from therapy sessions and provide several resources, including the Veteran Combat Center 1-877-WAR-VETS for 24/7 support and the Vet Center for military vets transitioning into civilian life.

There are many other stress reduction techniques including; meditation, yoga, and exercise. For those in severe immediate pain interventional pain management can help improve mobility and the ability to participate in some of the above stress reduction techniques.



Pudendal Nerve Block

Pudendal Nerve Block

The pudendal nerve is the primary nerve of the perineum. It carries sensation between the genitals as well as motor supply to various pelvic muscles. Neuropathic pain in the perineum, genital and ano-rectal areas may come as a result of entrapment.

Pudendal nerve entrapment syndrome is a fairly uncommon condition resulting from prolonged compression of the pudendal nerve. The most common causes for pudendal nerve entrapment include:

  • Repeated mechanical injury (e.g. sitting on bicycle seats for prolonged periods over many years or months)
  • Trauma to the pelvic area e.g. during childbirth
  • Damage to the nerve during surgical procedures in the pelvic or perineal regions
  • Compression from lesions or tumours arising in the pelvis
  • Any cause for the development of peripheral neuropathy (e.g. diabetes or vasculitis).


At Newbridge we perform local anesthetic and corticosteroid nerve block procedures to reduce swelling and inflammation for patients presenting with pudendal nerve pain.


What is the cause of my neck pain?

What is the cause of my neck pain?

Neck pain is the second most common complaint among our patients second only to lower back pain of course.

There are myriad reasons that pain in the neck can occur. Sometimes the cause is obvious, a patient has had an accident or injury resulting a physical trauma that causes pain in the neck or cervical region. However, other times you may not be able to pin point a specific incident or don’t understand what happened to actually cause the pain you are experiencing. In medical terms this is called idiopathic pain which can be more difficult to treat.

Your neck is made up of ligaments muscles and bones. The cervical spine (the upper vertebrae of the spine) goes from the skull to the torso between each vertebrae are discs that act as shock absorbers between the bones.

Injury, inflammation and a range of abnormalities to any of the above can cause neck pain and stiffness.

Types of neck pain and possible causes

Pain going down your neck through your shoulders or arms is called radiating neck pain or cervical radiculopathy. If you experience this you may be suffering from either a cervical herniated disc  spinal spinal stenosis or degenerative disc disease.

Cervical radiculopathy is commonly associated with an injury near the nerve root and is often called a “pinched nerve”. Radiating pain may be accompanied by numbness or tingling down the arm.

Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of the spinal canal. As the spinal canal narrows it puts pressure on the nerves which in turn may cause pain. Foraminal stenosis is the narrowing the cervical disc space due to the enlargement of a joint in the spinal canal. In some cases this condition may require surgery.

Degeneration of the disc, where the space between the individual vertebrae becomes smaller and the disc becomes less spongy and therefore less capable of absorbing shock, is also a very common cause for neck pain.

In some case muscle stiffness may be the cause of neck pain. In these cases trigger point injections can help by encouraging blood flow to the region by igniting the body’s inclination to self heal.

If you are experiencing neck pain that persists your pain management specialist can order Xrays and MRIs to discover the root cause of this pain and develop a multi-modal treatment plan to combat pain and help you regain your quality of life.



Top Docs 2015 Washingtonian

Top Docs 2015 Washingtonian

Newbridge Physicians awarded Washingtonian “Top Docs 2015”

Congrats to our founder Dr. Jay Gonchigar and senior physician Dr. Majid H. Ghauri for being selected among the Washingtonian magazine’s Top Doctors of 2015.

Dr. Gonchigar has been practicing pain management since 1996 and is one of the DMV areas longest standing specialist pain providers.

Dr Majid H. Ghauri has over 13 years of experience practicing pain medicine. We sat down with Dr. Ghauri between procedures to ask a few questions about his passion for pain management.

Since 2002 Dr. Ghauri has  developed his specialist interventional pain management techniques therefore you’d expect him to have a favorite procedure, “I enjoy performing all interventional procedures. Whenever a procedure helps a patient feel better I’m happy. Whatever procedure will most effectively achieve pain relief for that patient is my favorite at that time.”

When asked what he loves most about pain management he states, “with the advances in pain management procedures and techniques we have been able to establish and maintain an extremely high success rate with injection treatments.” This high success rate means that more patients are able to pursue their daily activities with far less reliance on long-term medications.

The moments he is most proud of in his lengthy career are not achieving his triple board certification, awards or prestige he states, “every time a patient gets better and says ‘thank-you’ I feel proud of what I do and the career path I have chosen.”

His advice for anyone entering the field; “work hard and don’t take any thing lightly.”

These two Newbridge Spine & Pain Center physicians have a long history of treating chronic pain in Maryland and the surrounding area going back to 1997.

With a team of fellowship trained & board-certified pain management specialists, Newbridge Spine & Pain is one of the few pain practices equipped with the expertise and resources to provide patients with monitored anesthesia care (sedation) during pain management procedures.