Donna Stands Up to Back Pain, Realizes a Better Quality of Life

When Donna Malone met Dr. Bennett Kramer, Medical Director of the Pain Management Clinic at Northeast Rehabilitation Hospital Network in Salem, NH, her life changed, significantly.

Pain Management Team
Dr. Kramer and members of NRHNs Pain Management Clinic Team in Salem, NH who cared for Donna.

“For a really long time I wasn’t able to do anything I enjoyed because my back pain was just awful. I have a big family, five adult children (three boys and two girls), 12 grandchildren and more than 20 great grandchildren. They were doing a lot for me. I couldn’t clean, get groceries, or even walk… and I was a walker. I used to walk from Haverhill, MA to Groveland, MA.”

Now, Donna is taking care of herself and enjoying time with her family and her friends.

When Donna and Dr. Kramer first met, she was exhausted from the chronic pain and feeling like she would never find any relief. Dr. Kramer met with Donna to review her health history, understand her symptoms, and explore her goals so he could determine the most appropriate treatment options to help her realize a better quality of life. “At my first appointment, I shared my symptoms and how the chronic pain was affecting me. Dr. Kramer listened and we talked. He explained what we could do and was so informative and supportive from the first time I met him. Everyone was so nice and helpful.”

Together, they decided to move forward with an intrathecal pump. This small round device was implanted under Donna’s skin at the side of her abdomen and sends pain medication directly to the nerves in her spine. There were times during her treatment when Donna had questions, “they always called me back. They are so good to me. I recommend them highly.”

Donna reflected on the experience…
“I’m really proud of myself. I could have just given up but with the right support we were able to turn things around. I’m now able to enjoy special moments with my family and many of the things I love.”