Pamela Y. Thomas-King, M.D.
Pamela Y. Thomas-King, M.D., is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Medical School. She completed her residency in Anesthesia at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. Immediately following, Dr. Thomas-King entered a 12-month fellowship training program in pain management at Duke. Board Certified in both anesthesia and pain management by the American Board of Anesthesia, she opened the Pain Management and Treatment center as a solo practitioner in 1996.
Shortly after setting up her practice, an interviewer with a local area publication asked Dr. Thomas-King why she chose to specialize in pain management. Written more than 14 years ago, her response was: “In 1994, shortly before beginning my last year of residency in Anesthesia my mother, who was 51 years old, was diagnosed with a severe case of rheumatoid arthritis. The onset of this disease dramatically changed the quality of her life.”
- rheumatologist to treat her joint degeneration – receiving weekly injections and daily prescribed medications
- psychologist to address the depression and anxiety issues
- give up a 20+ year career as a government employee due to her medical condition;
- rely on my father to take care of her basic day-to-day needs;
- deal with depression/anxiety; and
- cope with the unbearable pain she was experiencing 24 hours a day, 7 days per week.
“I felt, it was important for her to add a pain management specialist to her team of health care providers. This was not an easy task. In the early 1990’s, there were a limited number of pain management physicians in this country. In the mid-sized city where my mother lived, we could not find one. Further research, revealed this problem extended beyond what was happening to her. The large number of Americans with chronic pain who were receiving inadequate pain management care or none at all was unacceptable to me. For my mothers and other chronic pain sufferers, I decided to extend my medical training for an additional year and applied for a fellowship in pain management at Duke University Medical Center. This was one of the few programs in existence in the early 90’s. Competition for admission was stiff – the program only accepted one student each year. Fortunately, I was the one to be accepted in July 1995.”
When the doors opened at the Pain Management and Treatment Center in 1996, the first patient on the schedule was Dr. Thomas-King’s mother. The decision to pursue a post-graduate fellowship in pain management has made a difference not only in her mother’s life, but the lives of many people in Milwaukee and surrounding areas who are chronic pain sufferers. The degree of satisfaction expressed by patients who have been treated at Pain Management and Treatment Center is reflected by the many testimonials received from patients.