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Pain management.

February 22, 2012

WordPress has a wonderful array of tools to help manage and improve my blog.  One day last week I was looking over my stats and noticed something in the section that tells me search terms people have used in search engines to get to my blog.  One of the searches someone did was “Are all doctors afraid to prescribe opiates.”  It made me sad to think of someone having chronic, unmanageable pain and looking for answers on the internet because they can’t get them from the doctors they have seen.  Of course, I have no idea who used that search or what their circumstances were, but that was what my imagination came up with.

The answer to that anonymous searcher’s question is “no.”  There are doctors who are able to manage pain and if necessary, prescribe opiates to treat it.  Pain management is a growing specialty and it is getting easier to find a qualified pain management doctor in most areas.  WebMD has a good overview article about pain clinics here.  The American Chronic Pain Association has a website with a wealth of information.  Pain management specialists generally have more to offer than just opiate pain medicine.  They are usually fellowship trained in pain management and can offer a variety of modalities and procedures besides medications to treat pain and improve quality of life.  Most commonly I have seen anesthesiologists and physical medicine and rehabilitation doctors in this specialty.  These doctors first completed residencies in their specialty then went on to take a fellowship in pain management.  Look for this information when you check out a new doctor so you know they are well trained.

If you are suffering with chronic pain of any kind, there are doctors who can help.  I hope the person who did that search found what they needed.

One Comment leave one →
  1. sPeeDeeBee permalink
    June 25, 2012 4:28 pm

    I went through an incredible “integrated” pain management program at St. Luke’s Hospital in Milwaukee. By integrated, I mean that there were physiatrists, psychologists, anesthesiologists, physical and occupational therapists, etc. The program was so effective for me that I returned to work, albeit in a slightly more feasible position that I was thrilled about. The program no longer exists, mainly because there were too few people who experienced the life-changing effects that I did. Frankly, you have to be ready for pain management. You have to give up the tempting but unreasonable expectation that medical doctors always have answers, let alone “cures.” Most significantly, you have to be ready to make some serious changes in behaviors that are actually more harmful than not. If you can do this, then you can do this!

    If there’s an integrated program in your area, check it out. The APCA, mentioned in the article, has been a terrific resource for me over the years.

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