Pictured above: Chris Maranto, M.D., from left, Heath McCarver, M.D., and Mikio Ranahan, M.D.


Winner, Best Pain Specialist (Mikio Ranahan, M.D.)

Pain is the most common reason for seeking medical care in the United States, according to the National Institutes of Health.


“Everyone has pain somewhere, of some kind, and it can be treated,” said Heath McCarver, M.D., a pain management specialist at the Conway Regional Advanced Pain Management Center. McCarver and his colleagues, Chris Maranto, M.D., and Mikio Ranahan, M.D., have been recognized as the state’s best pain specialists by AY in 2023. They find purpose and satisfaction in helping patients find relief from pain.


“There is rarely ever one way to get rid of pain,” McCarver said. “It usually requires a combination of techniques, including medication. If you approach it from several different angles, usually you can find a combination that gives relief.”


The physicians at the Conway Regional Advanced Pain Management Center specialize in the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of different types of pain, including acute and chronic pain. In addition to pain in joints throughout the body, the doctors treat migraine headaches, fibromyalgia and reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome. They also provide nerve blockers and medication management for cancer-related pain.


“There is no magic pill,” Ranahan said. “If someone has one solution to all your problems, that is a red flag because pain affects all aspects of your life. For most patients suffering from chronic pain, one pill or one procedure is not going to make everything better. It takes several routes to manage pain.”


The Conway Regional pain management specialists believe in a multidisciplinary method of treating all types of pain, often teaming up with orthopedic surgeons, oncologists, neurologists and neurosurgeons, therapists and counselors as part of an individual pain-management plan.


“We want to know whether they have had injuries, surgery, and specifically look at X-rays, [computerized tomography] and MRI images,” Maranto said. “We need to know what has already been done before we make our plans.”


“Another myth is that people are stuck with pain,” McCarver added. “Pain is very common, but it is also uncommon that we can’t find relief. We can get rid of pain, at least to a much more functional level.”


Ranahan said low-impact exercise and smoking cessation can help people avoid the pain that sends so many people to the pain management center.


“Staying active is the most important thing to do under the advice of your physician,” he said. “Low-impact exercise and sports such as cycling, swimming, running and walking are generally helpful.” 

2200 Ada Ave., Suite 301 • Conway • 501.358.6560 • conwayregional.org