Spencer Bertram, D.C., M.D., is a board-certified and fellowship-trained pain management specialist with MidMichigan Health’s Spine and Pain Program.
As a pain management physician, Dr. Bertram provides balanced pain management care to diagnose and treat conditions such as neck and back pain, including work-related injuries and sciatica; persistent pain after back or neck surgery; arthritis pain in spine and joints; Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS); nerve damage; muscle spasm pain; shingles pain and headaches.
Dr. Bertram started his career as a chiropractor, helping patients improve spinal and joint pain. After practicing as a chiropractor for several years, Dr. Bertram decided he wanted to expand his approach to patients with chronic pain and pursued a medical degree. He has been able to combine his knowledge of the chiropractic field with the advanced practices of pain management, and deliver unique treatments and results.
Philosophy of Care
“It is my opinion that making use of as many treatment options as possible is the best way to identify a custom program for each individual patient,” said Dr. Bertram. This approach combines medication, injection therapy, rehabilitation and behavioral medicine to develop a healthy, balanced care plan. “Pain is a chronic condition, and finding a care plan that can be maintained over a long period of time, without causing harm, is my goal.” Dr. Bertram said it’s very encouraging that there is agreement about narcotic pain medications being limited, if not avoided, when possible.
Dr. Bertram is passionate about learning new techniques for pain management so he can offer them to his patients and help them avoid addictive medication as well as invasive surgery. He believes that chronic pain management is all about trying options, and if they don’t work, finding other reasonable options that will help.
The combination of chiropractic and traditional medical pain management gives Dr. Bertram a unique perspective and approach to his patients. Dr. Bertram thinks the “before and after” are the most satisfying part of his job. “That’s really what it’s all about,” he said. “Seeing the transformation from someone who can barely get off the couch to someone who can get on with their life and complete their work, social and family commitments. That’s the most satisfying part of what I do.”
Dr. Bertram and his wife have two adult sons, who are both involved in the family real estate business. In his spare time, Dr. Bertram invests his expertise in home renovation and restoration. He also enjoys playing the piano and organ at his church.
Special Interests and Procedures
Dr. Bertram has a special interest in the MILD procedure, which helps patients with spinal stenosis live a much more active lifestyle by increasing standing time and walking distance.