Chronic pain can be a very difficult and debilitating condition that can significantly affect a person’s life. That is why at PRIME Pain Institute we are dedicated to relieve your pain andrestore your quality of life.

The first step is to identify sources of pain and directly address them rather than manage pain as a symptom. Through many years of experience and continued search for the best available treatment options, we have created a unique approach that incorporates cutting edge westerntechnologies and innovative, alternative medicine solutions.  

Our Vision

PRIME Pain Medicine Institute was founded by Victor Li, MD who blended his expertise in interventional pain medicine learned at University of Pennsylvania with alternative pain medicine solutions of acupuncture, low intensity laser therapy, deep myofascial therapy called PUSH therapy, and other unique treatment methods.

Our Approach

Our approach was developed by Dr. Victor Li, a Board Certified Pain Medicine specialist, based on the unique blend of cutting-edge modern western medicine interventions and ancient eastern medicine and other alternative medicine techniques. This is the place where the West meets the East in attempt to heal and alleviate pain and to improve life quality.

Our Goal

Our Goal is to address pain by eliminating its source rather than masking pain with pain pills. Actually, one of the main goals of treatments along with diminishing pain is decreasing or completely eliminating intake of pain medications. Dr. Li and his team welcome you to our Institute where thousands of patients were helped to cure or greatly diminish their pain.

Interested in setting up an appointemnt please contact us

Our Team

Interested in setting up an appointemnt please contact us

Conditions Treated

Our goal is to address your pain and get you back to an active life!

Pain Diagnosis

Properly diagnosing the source of your pain is key to any lasting pain treatment.

Pain Relief

We offer many different treatments depending on your needs and underlying causes of your pain.

Active Lifestyle

Once your pain is better controlled, a physical therapy and exercise program will likely be started to help increase your activity levels.

Any spinal pain can be multifactorial in nature and may be caused by problems in multiple anatomical structures. The goal of treatment is to accurately diagnose and treat each single problem starting from the most significant issues.

First question one want to ask whether pain is worse in the lower extremities or in the lumbar spine itself. Typically, pain that radiates from the lumbar spine to the lower extremities may be caused by nerve compression caused by herniated discs. This type of pain is often worse with the forward flexion of the lumbar spine. The other cause of pain radiating down to the lower extremities could be a narrowing of the small pathways where the nerves travel called foramina. Both structural abnormalities can be confirmed by MRI of the lumbar spine and may be treated with the series of the lumbar epidural steroid injections.

Lower back pain that is not associated with radiation to the lower extremities called axial back pain, is very often caused by inflammation or degeneration of the small joints between the back bones called lumbar facet joints (form of arthritis that can be result of injury or chronic wear and tear). The pain is often worse with extension or lateral twisting of the lumbar spine. To confirm that diagnosis, patients undergo sets of two diagnostic injections with local anesthetics. If each of the diagnostic injection provides even short-lasting pain relief (for few hours or days), it confirms the diagnosis of facet arthopathy and more definitive, longer-lasting (it typically lasts 6-12 months and can be repeated again) procedure called radiofrequency denervation or rhizothomy can be performed.

Pain in the buttocks area can originate from sacro-iliac joints that can be treated with corticosteroid injections and sometimes with radiofrequency denervation or rhizothomy.

Other structures causing chronic lower pain may include muscles, ligaments, discs, and hip joints.
Treatment options directed to pain originating from these structures may include myofascial therapy, acupuncture, osteopathic adjustments, trigger point injections, physical therapy and exercise program among others.

Low-level laser therapy is a very powerful alternative treatment option that can be effective for pain related to almost any structural abnormality but only used as a second line therapy due to lack of insurance coverage.

Medications utilized for treatment of chronic pain provide only symptomatic relief and should be only used as an adjunct to more direct treatments at minimally effective doses and shortest possible period of time.

In some cases, patients may need to have a referral to address the structural derangement causing their pain.

Any spinal pain can be multifactorial in nature and may be caused by problems in multiple anatomical structures. The goal of treatment is to accurately diagnose and treat each single problem starting from the most significant issues.

Very often midback pain is caused by inflammation or degeneration of the small joints between the backbones called thoracic facet joints. This is a form of arthritis that can result from injury or chronic wear and tear. The pain is often worse with extension and lateral twisting of the spine. To confirm that diagnosis, patients undergo sets of two diagnostic injections with local anesthetics. If each of the diagnostic injection provides even short-lasting pain relief (for a few hours or days), it confirms the diagnosis of facet arthropathy and more definitive, longer-lasting procedure (lasting typically 6-12 months) called radiofrequency denervation or rhizothomy can be performed. This procedure can be repeated if/when the pain returns.

If midback pain radiates along the ribs, it may be due to herniated discs. This can be confirmed by an MRI of the thoracic spine. The treatment for that condition often includes series of thoracic epidural steroid injections.

Other structures causing chronic midback pain may include muscles, ligaments, or bones called vertebrae.

Treatment options may include myofascial therapy, acupuncture, osteopathic adjustments, physical therapy and exercise program among others.

Treatment options directed to pain originating from these structures may include myofascial therapy, acupuncture, osteopathic adjustments, trigger point injections, physical therapy and exercise program among others.

Low-level laser therapy is a very powerful alternative treatment option that can be effective for pain related to almost any structural abnormality but only used as a second line therapy due to lack of insurance coverage.

Medications utilized for treatment of chronic pain provide only symptomatic relief and should be only used as an adjunct to more direct treatments at minimally effective doses and shortest possible period of time.

In some cases, patients may need to have a surgical referral to address the structural derangement causing their pain.

Any spinal pain can be multifactorial in nature and may be caused by problems in multiple anatomical structures. The goal of treatment is to accurately diagnose and treat each single problem starting from the most significant issues.

The first question one wants to ask is whether the pain is worse in the upper extremities or in the cervical spine (neck) itself.

Typically, pain that radiates from the cervical spine to the extremities may be caused by nerve compression caused by herniated discs. This type of pain is often worse with the forward flexion of the cervical spine. The other cause of pain radiating down to the arms could be a narrowing of the small pathways where the nerves travel called foramina. Both structural abnormalities can be confirmed by MRI of the cervical spine and may be treated with the series of the cervical epidural steroid injections.

Neck pain that is not associated with radiation to the upper extremities called axial pain, is very often caused by inflammation or degeneration of the small joints between the back bones called cervical facet joints. This is a form of arthritis that can result from injury or chronic wear and tear. The pain is typically worse with extension or rotation of the cervical spine. To confirm that diagnosis, patients undergo sets of two diagnostic injections with local anesthetics. If each of the diagnostic injection provides even short-lasting pain relief (for a few hours or days), it confirms the diagnosis of facet arthropathy and more definitive, longer-lasting procedure (lasting typically 6-12 months) called radiofrequency denervation or rhizothomy can be performed. This procedure can be repeated if/when the pain returns.

Other structures causing chronic neck pain may include muscles and ligaments.

Treatment options directed to pain originating from these structures may include myofascial therapy, acupuncture, osteopathic adjustments, trigger point injections, physical therapy and an exercise program among others.

Low-level laser therapy is a very powerful alternative treatment option that can be effective for pain related to almost any structural abnormality but only used as a second line therapy due to lack of insurance coverage.

Medications utilized for treatment of chronic pain provide only symptomatic relief and should be only used as an adjunct to more direct treatments at minimally effective doses and shortest possible period of time.

In some cases, patients may need to have a surgical referral to address the structural derangement causing their pain.

Joints form the connections between bones and are made up of cartilage, ligaments, tendons, bursas (fluid-filled sacs that help cushion the joint), and a membrane (lining of the joint capsule that secretes fluid to lubricate the joint). Any damage to the joints from disease, injury, or wear and tear can interfere with movement and cause pain.

Many different conditions can lead to painful joints, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, bursitis, gout, strains, sprains, and other injuries. As we get older, painful joints become increasingly more common.

Joint pain can range from mildly irritating to debilitating. It may go away after a few weeks (acute), or last for several weeks or months (chronic). Even short-term pain and swelling in the joints can affect your quality of life. Treatments often include physical therapy, injections, acupuncture, low level laser therapy, diet and lifestyle modifications, and if severe, surgery.

Headaches
Headache is pain in any region of the head. Headaches may occur on one or both sides of the head, be isolated to a certain location, radiate across the head from one point, or have a vise-like quality. A headache may be a sharp pain, throbbing sensation or dull ache. Headaches may appear gradually or suddenly, and they may last less than an hour or for several days. The most common types of headaches are migraine, tension-type, cluster, and sinus. Each has a different approach to treatment, however many can respond well to therapies such as acupuncture, myofascial release, and certain nerve blocks.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is severe, spreading chronic pain with redness, fluctuating skin temperature, and sometimes changes in body hair and nail growth. These issues make it hard for most patients to use their affected arm or leg, the body parts that are most often impacted.

Most cases of CRPS develop after an injury to a limb. Because CRPS can cause the arm or leg to stiffen over time, the pain usually worsens without treatment and makes movement more and more difficult. For these reasons, early diagnosis and the right treatment are critical.

Treatment of CRPS requires multiple therapy approaches carefully coordinated by physicians and therapists who are experienced in this complex condition.

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Knee Arthritis

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Meniscus Tear

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Headaches

Do you suffer from untreated pain?

Treatments Offered



Non-Interventional Procedures

Acupuncture involves the insertion of very thin needles through skin at strategic points on your body to stimulate an beneficial effects. One of the more studied uses of acupuncture is for the treatment of pain.

Traditional Chinese medicine explains acupuncture as a technique for balancing the flow of energy or life force — known as qi or chi (CHEE) — believed to flow through pathways (meridians) in your body. By inserting needles into specific points along these meridians, acupuncture practitioners believe that your energy flow will re-balance.

In contrast, many Western practitioners view the acupuncture points as places to stimulate nerves, muscles and connective tissue. Some believe that this stimulation boosts your body's natural painkillers and increases blood flow.
Low-level laser therapy, or cold laser, is a painless treatment producing no heat or discomfort. The therapy can stimulate areas of the body to restore normal cellular function to damaged tissue beneath the skin. It reduces inflammation and aids the body's natural ability to heal itself. It often takes 10 or more sessions before the effects are seen.
Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) are physicians who use traditional medicine to treat ailments. In addition, osteopaths are trained in the use of hands-on manipulation to treat musculoskeletal disorders. In this way, osteopathic treatment balances the muscles, nerves and bones in order to encourage the body’s own inherent healing abilities.

Osteopathy supports the body’s natural tendency to maintain health. Osteopathic physicians are trained to feel the body’s living anatomy and palpate the flow of fluids, motion and texture of its tissue and structural makeup. By employing Osteopathic Manipulation, the physician restores normal function in areas impaired by trauma and illness. When diagnosing medical problems, D.O.s may use palpatory skills (the sense of touch) in addition to the full array of modern medical diagnostic tools such as blood tests, x-rays and MRIs
Myofascial therapy is a type of safe, hands-on treatment that focuses on pain arising from myofascial tissues (the tough membranes that wrap, connect and support your muscles). The therapy focuses on reducing pain by easing the tension and tightness in the tender muscular areas of your body.

The techniques applied in myofascial therapy decrease restricted movement leading to reduced pain and improvement of symptoms. It can often take a number of sessions for lasting relief.
Our philosophy is to properly diagnose and treat the cause of pain rather than mask symptoms with opioid pain medications. Numerous agencies and pain societies have determined the risk of abuse and addiction outweighs the benefit of their long-term use. If, after evaluation, patients are found not to be candidates for opioid pain medications, they will be slowly weaned off.
The Central Coast Functional Restoration program is a rehabilitation program for chronic pain sufferers that aims to increase or restore physical functioning, improve pain coping skills, promote the return to a productive lifestyle at home or at work, and return to social activities.

Our goal is to treat the whole person, recognizing that pain and disability affects all aspects of a person’s life. Each patient enrolled in the program participates in structured daily activities and receives individual case management, tailored psychological counseling, and physical therapy as needed.

Pain is a complex experience that requires specialized knowledge, substantial time, and access to professionals that include psychologists, exercise and physical therapists, and other healthcare professionals who can offer extra physical or mental therapy while the physician continues to orchestrate the whole therapeutic process. Close communication between all participating professionals is mandatory.

New Patients

  • Welcome to our Practice

    To schedule as a New Patient, please have a referral forwarded to our office and someone will call you to schedule.

    You can also call us directly at
    831-464-7246 (Capitola)
    or
    831-287-2843 (Salinas).

Offer
  • What to Bring to your first Visit
    • Please make sure to bring current insurance cards
    • Please arrive 10 minutes prior to appointment time
    • Please bring all MRI, X-RAY, or CT scans pertaining to the areas you will be seen for
    • Please bring a list of all medications you are currently taking

Interested in setting up an appointemnt please contact us

Surgery Centers

Capitola Surgery Center

2265 41st Avenue
Capitola, CA 95010


Salinas Surgery Center

9955 Blanco
Cir # A
Salinas, CA 93901

Locations

PRIME Pain

4140 Jade Street
Suite 102
Capitola, CA 95010

  • p. 831.464.7246
  • f. 831.464.7744
  • Monday - Friday: 8:30am - 5:00pm

PRIME Pain Salinas

951 Blanco Circle
Suite D
Salinas, CA 93901

  • p. 831.287.2843
  • f. 831.287.2846
  • Office hours vary, please call us for more information