Pain doctor relies on faith to help patients

Friday , December 12, 2014 - 6:55 PM

KAYSVILLE — Christian “Kris” Obah is one man who lives up to his name.

A doctor at the Lifespring Pain Management Center in Kaysville and Ogden, Obah has made a successful career out of living his Christian faith.

“I believe my patients are well today because God blesses my work,” Obah said. “That’s what He said in His Bible and the Bible is true. I don’t see anything I do as my own intelligence. I see it as God’s handy work. I give Him all the glory.”

Obah said his goal always is to love his neighbor as himself.

“I don’t treat my patients as patients,” he said. “I treat them as friends and relatives. I try to be a blessing to them.”

Obah quoted one of his pastors where he attends services at Alpine Church: “When we focus on being a blessing to others, God will make sure we will be blessed abundantly.”

The 49-year-old Farmington resident immigrated to the United States from Nigeria.

While studying and later practicing general medicine in that country, Obah said he was inspired by refugees he was able to help.

“Restoring them to their lives gave me a lot of satisfaction,” he said about the compassion he learned there.

Obah said he was inspired to become a pain specialist while completing a fellowship at the University of Utah Medical Center.

He said older women would come to the clinic at the university unable to communicate about the pain from which they suffered.

Doctors were skeptical about helping them, he said.

Watching this situation, Obah said he decided he wanted to help those who needed help.

And his patients agree that it is their doctor’s compassion that allows them to be healed.

Danielle Schneider of South Ogden said she’d gone to seven different doctors and chiropractors to try and get a handle on her pain from her degenerative arthritis but she couldn’t get to a solution.

But she said because Obah did not judge her and listened compassionately, she was able to open up and the two were able to explore options.

“It helps me be 100 percent honest,” she said, noting that often people with chronic pain are judged by others for being drug addicts, which keeps them from addressing the real problem.

Eventually under Obah’s care, Schneider underwent a procedure to burn a nerve that was causing her discomfort and she said she was able to exercise, helping her to lose 15 pounds so far.

“I used to be a skinny, hot mamma,” the 37-year-old said of before she developed back problems.

Obah said Schneider is one of many patients who were able to reduce the number of pain killers they were taking once they were able to discover the real roots of their problems and address them.

And the doctor believes God leads him to discover root causes of his patients’ pain.

“If not for the grace of God, I wouldn’t be able to do the things I am doing,” he said. “I make every patient happy by giving Him the glory.”

And when patients become happy, they receive a new lease on life.

“It increases their quality of life,” he said. “It gives them new hope. It helps them to be a functional member of society again. It improves their overall well-being.”

Obah said pain is a multi-faceted problem that affects people physically, mentally, emotionally and financially. When he can address their pain, he believes he can improve many areas of their lives.

“I’m just trying to be a good person,” he said. “I’m trying to see this as my calling to increase their quality of life. I am trying my best to do what God would have me do. I try to treat people as a person, not just as a number.”

Obah said his faith gives him an inner strength and a balance in life.

“I get my strength from God,” he said. “My faith in God carries me through.” 

You may reach reporter JaNae Francis at 801-625-4228. Follow her on Twitter at JaNaeFrancisSE. Like her Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SEJaNaeFrancis.

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