Phantom Pain Treatment in Dubai


The feeling that an amputated limb is still present is very common. It is known as a phantom sensation. Phantom Limb Pain (PLP) is characterised as pain that is felt in a part of the body area which has been amputated. According to reports, the occurrence of PLP is as high as in 60–80% of amputees.

Onset of Phantom Limb Pain

Most cases of PLP occur immediately following an amputation procedure. However, some occur a few weeks or even months later.

A quarter of patients suffer a delayed rise towards maximal pain, while one-third of patients experience the worst post-operative symptoms immediately after the surgery, which typically go away within 100 days. 

The other half of the patients experience pain that steadily increases and gets better within 100 days.

Symptoms of Phantom Limb Pain

The following are traits of phantom pain:

Dr Demetrius is a leading reconstructive surgeon and one of the most experienced medical professionals when it comes to phantom pain treatment in Dubai. He has handled several such cases successfully and thus holds a strong track record.

Disabled young woman getting used to new bionic prosthesis. Girl setting her robotic hand functions.

Causes of Phantom Limb Pain

Phantom pain’s exact origin is unknown. Nonetheless, the spinal cord and brain seem to be its likely sources. When a person experiences phantom pain, areas of the brain that were neurologically related to the nerves of the amputated limb activate during imaging studies, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or positron emission tomography (PET).

Many professionals think that phantom pain may at least in part be explained as a reaction to conflicting messages from the brain. Following an amputation, certain parts of the spinal cord and brain no longer receive coordinated signals from the amputated limb, and they adapt to this detachment in unforeseen ways. The end outcome may cause discomfort, the body’s simplest signal that something is wrong.

Scar tissue at the location of the amputation, damaged nerve endings, and the physical memory of pain prior to the amputation are a few other variables that are thought to contribute to phantom pain. Although this is frequently regarded as a cause of residual limb discomfort, a poorly fitting prosthesis may also cause pain.

Phantom Pain treatment in Dubai

Surgical methods like TMR and RPNI are significant advances in the treatment of phantom limb pain. .

TMR aims to give the nerves “somewhere to go and something to do.” It involves using microsurgical procedures to reroute severed or damaged nerves  to nearby muscle targets, giving the nerve ends a new network to innervate. The new muscle target encourages the nerve to regenerate in an organised manner relieving pain and discomfort. This “completes the circuit” and help the brain manage sensations in a more normal way. 

In the regenerative peripheral nerve interface (RPNI) technique, a residual peripheral nerve is wrapped in an autologous muscle graft taken from a healthy part like the thighs. The muscle grafts serve as a site for new nerve growth.

The development of neuromas is stopped by this planned regeneration. It is less difficult than TMR procedures. This procedure is primarily done to remove neuromas and is also used as a preventive measure to prevent the formation of neuromas after amputation surgery.

Although there are no medications made particularly to treat phantom pain, certain pain relievers, antidepressants, and narcotic medicines can reduce nerve discomfort.

Phantom pain can be relieved with some non-invasive techniques. Here are some therapies that may work:

Mirror box

This device has mirrors that give the impression that a limb has been amputated. The mirror box has two openings—one for the intact limb and the other for the residual limb.

The patient engages in symmetrical exercises where they imagine that they are witnessing the missing limb move while watching the intact leg move. According to some research, this activity may help relieve phantom pain.

Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS)

An electromagnetic coil is applied to the forehead during this therapy. The coil is used to transmit brief pulses that induce targeted electrical currents in the nerves in a particular brain region.

Spinal Cord Stimulation

The doctor places tiny electrodes along your spinal cord during spinal cord stimulation. In some cases, phantom pain may be reduced by continuously delivering a tiny electrical current to the spinal cord. 

Phantom Pain Treatment

Why choose Dr Demetrius for Phantom Pain treatment in Dubai?

With over 20 years of experience, Dr Demetrius is a veteran in this field. He is a renowned reconstructive and plastic surgeon with expertise in complex procedures like amputation rehabilitation, targeted muscle reanimation (TMR), and critical pain issues an amputee might face. He was a dedicated doctor at the Royal Air Force Medical Branch for 22 years, and today, he is an eminent and trusted name in the domain of amputation surgery and aftercare.

If PLP is taking a toll on your daily routine and the pain does not seem to disappear, feel free to contact Dr Demetrius without delay.