Chronic Pain and the treatments of the Chronic Pain.
What is pain? In the definition of Medical Terminology, the root word for pain is algia. So if you think of ailments the end with algia they are referring to something to do with pain(Brooks 2002). If you have ever had pain from a broken bone or surgery that is not the kind of pain I’m
referring to. Stipulated by (Seeley, Stephens and Tate 2003) that is acute pain and as your body heals the pain gradually tends to go away.
From the Southern Medical Journal the patient’s page by Betsy Allen, MA (2007) she says that chronic pain is totally different. Chronic pain according to an old Anatomy & Physiology book that I have that was written by a combination of writers from Idaho State University is Rod Seeley and Trent Stephens and from Phoenix College is Philip Tate(2003) who states that their definition for pain is an important warning sign of a possible potential injurious conditions p476.
The pain receptors are stimulated when tissue is injured. If the tissue that is injured heals the pain will go away p476. However, pain itself can be debilitating along with losing the value of providing information about the condition of the body (Stroud, Heapy, Higgins, and Sellinger 2006). Mentioned by the same team of authors the chronic pain that is being referred to as migraine headaches, localized facial pain, or back pain just to mention a few. But then there are AIDS patients, cancer patients, cardiac patients who all also suffer from chronic pain and the list goes on and on (Stroud, Heapy, Higgins, and Sellinger 2006).
According to WebMD, the reason for chronic pain is not clear. When you have an injury or illness, certain nerves are affected that send pain impulses to the brain. The brain lets us know that we have pain but sometimes it is undetermined why we have pain, and it may take several types of treatments or combination of several treatments before you (Allen 2007) will actually feel any kind of relief however, people who suffer from chronic pain have become inactive therefore there strength, range of motion and flexibility are all effected but over time some treatments will actually decrease the pain level (Allen 2007). Also focused by (Allen 2007) states that People suffering from chronic pain often feel helpless and hopeless, and they may become dependent on drugs. Found in the ( Wikipedia encyclopedia 2007) says that often chronic pain cannot be cured, it can only be managed well enough to significantly improve the quality of life.
So my focus for my paper is that there are a lot of people men and women, old and younger that do actually suffer from chronic pain. So I will state the facts of my findings of different treatments and medication regimen or both that will give relief to chronic pain suffers.
Chronic pain is a disorder of the nervous system that persists for months or years and cannot be fully relieved by standard pain medications. It often includes burning, shooting, or shocking sensations (Glenn, Burns 2003). Chronic pain also may cause a problem called allodynia, in which people experience pain from stimuli that are not normally painful, such as a light touch or a breeze, or pain in places other than the area that is stimulated ( Taylor 2007). Also according to (Taylor 2007), there are many different kinds of chronic pain, including central pain, chronic regional pain syndrome (also called reflex sympathetic dystrophy), and peripheral neuropathy. Chronic back pain and conditions like arthritis, TMJ, bursitis, tendonitis, herniated disc, migraine headaches, sciatica, fibromyalgia, whiplash and carpal tunnel syndrome will set off a chain reaction of physical and mental side effects ( Heapy, Stroud. Higgins and Stellinger 2006).
Most studies of chronic pain have focused on signals in the spinal cord and in the peripheral nerves, which carry pain messages from the limbs and other parts of the body to the spinal cord. However, recent studies have suggested that the brain not only receives pain signals from the spinal cord but also undergoes changes in neuronal connections that may permanently strengthen its reactions to those signals. Researchers believe these changes are key to the development of chronic pain.
Depending on the condition and prognosis of the patient does the doctor determine will kind of treatment will be successful for relief of pain? Also to keep in mind that sometimes it’s a hit a miss type for the doctor until specific tests have been taken to determine what is the cause? (Briley 2004) The patient will ask the doctor for something for the pain. So if you stop and think about it part of the first treatment is conducted by the patient when he/she asks for some kind of medication to help with the pain. (Brown 2003)
What is there perception about the pain? Where does it actually hurt? Is it inside the body or on the out side? The only way to really tell what is wrong is to take some tests: x ray or CT scan to determine what it may or may not be. A lot of times they have to look a little deeper. In that case you would need an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) that will give a clearer picture of the injury or possible disease (Brooks 2002). Sometimes it is necessary to inject a dye into the vein to emphasize the area that is causing the pain (Brooks 2002). However, there are lots more but that is another topic. The tests such as: X-rays, CT scan and MRI are just the basics for determining what may be the problem.
The doctor may start you out with an anti-inflammatory drug such as: acetaminophen or aspirin, Motrin or ibuprofen, or naproxen (Aleve) to help those with pain, these simple analgesics can help control chronic pain when taken on a regular basis as said from before chronic pain is different in that it persists( Healthscout.com 2007 p1)
To deal with Mild pain its best to use acetaminophen or NSAID such as ibuprofen. Mild to Moderate pain its best to use NSAID and a weak opioid such as codeine or darvocet (Stanos 2007). Then of course, for Moderate to Severe pain first line choice is Morphine which is considered the gold standard (Wikipedia 2007). Second line is Oxycodone, Fentanyl in the form of a transdermal patch which has been designed for chronic pain management. Heat therapy is useful for back spasms or other conditions. Some patients find that moist heat works best (Healthscout.com 2007 p2).
Physical therapy and exercise, including stretching and strengthening (with specific focus on the muscles which support the spine ( Wikipedia 2007). Manipulation, Acupuncture, and Acupressure which is only done by a licensed Chiropractor, Osteopath, Physical therapist or a Physiatrist (Brooks 2002) which are some of the methods to help relieve pain without drugs.
The deep heat ultrasound, and massage therapy is on the up rise for therapy but still does not cure chronic pain. In conclusion the young and old suffer from chronic pain and it may start from acute pain but the longer you have to live with this pain the more it effects the mind and how the pain receptors continue to fire at a faster rate. Medication may slow down the pain receptors but does it actually help with the pain? Physical therapy will relieve the muscles that are affected. However, the strengthening, stretching is best for pain. Dad always said “no pain no gain”.
I have been suffering with chronic pain for 18 years and I did this paper on chronic pain and the treatments to see if the doctors have done everything possible to help with my pain. I have deteriorative disk disease, sciatica in both legs, osteoporosis, and arthritis. I have had two back surgeries and many different procedures. There was physical therapy, chiropractors and lots of different pills, from pain killers, anti-inflammatory, muscle relaxants. Nothing seems to work to the point of tolerance of maybe a normal or semi-pain free life. However, I can say that the combination of several of the different variables makes the pain I experience on a daily basis is tolerable without drug addiction. I do everything for myself but in my time. I learned how to adapt and do things without lifting and bending over.
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