Patient Testimonials

Patient of Dr. Ristvedt

“As a patient I felt like the “Lone Ranger”.  The patient feels no one else is experiencing this or understands what they are going through.  The patient feels totally isolated”.  This program “allowed me to look at matters in a different point of view—it took me to finding the positive rather than focusing on the negative with my chronic pain”.

Patient M.G.


Patient of Dr. Guarino:

V. Phillips, 76, found success almost immediately after undergoing cooled radiofrequency therapy at the Pain Management Center for both of her hips.

Phillips has been battling a series of health concerns over the years, including cancer, diabetes, and heart and kidney problems. In addition, she’s had severe back pain that contributed to her hip problems.

When her nephew recommended she see his physician, Dr. Guarino at the Pain Management Center, for her back problems, she took him up on the offer, and the two traveled from Perryville, Mo., to the center. While undergoing treatment for her back pain, Dr. Guarino told Phillips about a new procedure he was going to do that might help her hips.

“My hips are bone on bone, and I need total replacements, but due to my health problems, I’ve been told it’s totally impossible,” she says. “I was Dr. Guarino’s first patient, and the results were miraculous. I had tremendous relief almost immediately.”

Dr. Guarino says for patients like Phillips, joint replacements are out of the question because they put too much stress on an already stressed body. “I wish I had done this procedure sooner. It didn’t take long at all and has really made a difference in my life,” Phillips says. “I can’t praise Dr. Guarino enough and everyone in his office. His whole staff is so kind, caring and helpful. They are 100 percent top-notch.”

Thanks to her nephew, whom she calls “one in a million” and his recommendation of Dr. Guarino, she feels like she has a new lease on life. “I live a pretty fulfilling life, and I want to keep doing that as long as I can,” she says. “This has helped me stay active and independent.”



Patient of Dr. Tanying “Alison” Mao:

I went to my primary care doctor to have some testing done and two days later I found myself with a debilitating headache with nausea that forced me to do nothing but lay down. I missed work and called my doctor and was referred to the Washington University Pain Management Center at Missouri Baptist.  I met Dr. Mao and she recommended an “Epidural Blood Patch”.  I was nervous, scared and quite anxious. I am only 33 years old and this is scary!  The staff were amazing, they really helped me through the anxiety.  The procedure worked and my pain was GONE! The first day following the procedure I felt some pressure, but the next day NO PAIN!   Thank you Pain Center for your kindness during my treatment!   My nephew was born at MoBap on the day of the procedure and the pain relief allowed me to visit and hold him!!   Thank you!  Everyone was wonderful!  Because the procedure was such a success,  I was able to visit my nephew and take my trip as planned to New York!  Thank you, Dr. Mao!!

Patient K.M.


Patient of Dr. Xiaobin Yi:

In my previous life I was a master scuba diver and world traveler. I was extremely active and passionate, friends called me adventurous.    My life drastically changed as my spinal condition worsened, my pain was consistently 9/10 with no relief in sight.  I slowly began isolating myself as the damage in my back and neck tore my work, social and recreational joys apart.   I could no longer cook or even “do lunch” with my friends.   My friends and family wanted to help telling me often giving advice like  “just take a warm bath…”you will feel better”.  They all wanted to help, but did not know how.  I felt guilt for my pain.   It was going to take much more than a warm bath to fix my pain.   I was too young and too active to be falling apart!

I began seeing Dr. Yi in 2014; Dr. Yi began performing epidural steroid injections.  My pain was drastically decreased to 2/10.   Because of Dr. Yi and his medical expertise, I could participate in a physical therapy program that allowed me to improve my mobility.   Dr. Yi, simply amazing.   He is gentle and professional giving a thorough review of systems both from MRI’s, reports and me.  He does not just cover the black and white in reports, he covers the personal aspect of pain.   Dr. Yi created a plan of action for me which included procedures, medication and physical therapy.  I could finally take a breath for the first time in years.  In addition, he referred me to Dr. Ristvedt, a pain psychologist .  I was anxious about being sent to a pain psychologist, but kept on open mind.  The pain psychologist did not make me feel “crazy” or like all this pain was in my head. Dr. Ristvedt taught me how to talk to my family and friends about my pain and identify new passions, since scuba diver was now out of the picture.   I am now a painter with passion!  I am no longer isolated!  The Pain Management Team works together like a well-orchestrated concert.  They care about me and my life.    I am thankful and grateful.

Patient K.P

Missouri Baptist Pain Management Center


Patient of Dr. Xiaobin Yi:

I am a retired army medic that lost my right leg during a blast injury in Afghanistan in October 2006.   I really thought that was as bad as it could get, well I was wrong.   In September 2014, I broke my left fibula and was diagnosed with Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD).  The pain was horrible, beyond the pain of losing my right leg.  The pain was endless, always there, and impacted me physically, mentally, emotionally, I was just miserable.  I started seeing a physician in October 2014 and he started me on a treatment plan of doses of Ketamine.  The drug made me feel horrible, my emotional state declined and my PTSD became more apparent.  The treatments were not worth the pain reduction. I looked for a new doctor and was referred to Dr. Yi.  Dr. Yi evaluated me thorough and determined that I was a great candidate for a procedure  called a Lumbar Sympathetic Block (at various levels) and the relief was immediate!  Pain relief was good for one week, then Dr. Yi developed “rounds” of treatment that eventually gave me pain relief for 3 months!  The procedure has helped with the pain, but also with my phantom pain in my right stump.   Once this second round is complete,  Dr. Yi and I agreed to have a spinal stimulator placed. I trust Dr. Yi and his staff to the highest.  My life has changed and there is hope. I enjoy cooking and spending time with my amazing wife. Life is good again.  Thank you Dr. Yi and Staff,

Patient J.W.

Missouri Baptist Medical Center