Philip Blount has special empathy for patients at Methodist Pain & Spine Center

By Susan Christensen
Health and Research news Service

Dr. Philip Blount

Dr. Philip Blount has a special empathy for patients seeking relief from painful and disabling injuries.

During his first year at the University of Mississippi Medical School, the Jackson native suffered “major multiple trauma” in a car wreck. He spent six weeks in the hospital and had to take a leave of absence from his studies to fully recover.

“The experience I had as a patient and my period of recovery made me recognize what it means to walk that road,” he said. “When you have an injury that really takes away your independence and slows you down, it changes you. How to get back to who you were before becomes the real question and challenge.”

A recent addition to Methodist Pain & Spine Center in Flowood, Blount is now primed to help others meet that challenge. The outpatient facility is a division of Methodist Rehabilitation Center in Jackson, a hospital that has been helping patients overcome physical disabilities for almost 30 years. 

Blount is on staff with Dr. Leon Grigoryev, a physical medicine and rehab physician, and Dr. Bruce Hirshman, a pain management specialist.  He’ll also collaborate with the therapists and other health care professionals employed by Methodist Rehab Outpatient Services and Methodist Orthotics & Prosthetics, which are housed in the same building.

“I am excited about being part of this team,” he said. “Methodist has always had a reputation for outstanding rehab services. I think it is going to be a good fit.”

Methodist Rehab CEO Mark Adams agrees. “We’ve always envisioned our Flowood campus as a comprehensive resource for patients, and Dr. Blount will definitely expand our expertise. He’s board certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R), Sports Medicine and Electrodiagnostic Medicine.”

Blount’s decision to train in PM&R—a specialty that emphasizes non-surgical solutions to musculoskeletal problems—might have seemed an odd choice to his former colleagues in medical school. As a senior, he was awarded the Neurosurgery Merit Award at UMMC.

But his desire to be more involved with patients led Blount to pursue post-graduate training in PM&R at the Charlotte Institute of Rehabilitation in North Carolina. He also did a fellowship in musculoskeletal medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. 

A former associate professor at UMMC, Blount says his experience has taught him many valuable lessons, including the importance of education, communication and teamwork in all aspects of patient care. And he makes it a point to inform patients, their caregivers and other physicians about all that can be accomplished via PM&R practices. 

“Many medical conditions and symptoms can be managed successfully with non-surgical means,” he said. “Part of it is wellness and lifestyle, part of it is medications or injections and part of it is formal therapy prescriptions or even referrals. Management is individualized and people are often not fully aware of the options available and the success rates with those.”

Blount is equally enthusiastic about incorporating sports medicine strategies into his practice. He says the specialty takes a whole-body, return-to-play approach to care. Sports medicine considers not only accurate diagnosis and pain control, but also restoration of range of motion, strength and functional performance. 

“Every person is an athlete to some degree and every person has a sport—be it normal activities of daily living or actual athletics,” he said. “Sports medicine has been a very useful training for me.” 

Like the days he spent rehabbing from his accident, it’s a background that sets him apart. “It took me several months to heal and get my confidence back,” he said. “Having lived through that gives me a keen advantage.”

To learn more about Methodist Pain & Spine Center or to make an appointment with Dr. Philip Blount, call 601-936-8801.