Chronic Pain Relief Requires Combnation Therapy
General knowledge about chronic pain has not necessarily brought better treatments for the condition, a new analysis shows.
The Decade of Pain Control and Research (2000-2010) was headed by Dennis Turk of the University of Washington, and found that treatments for chronic pain like lower back pain, headache and fibromyalgia don’t do much in the way of alleviating pain or restoring function in sufferers of the condition.
Part of the problem is that people expect to be treated and cured by one medication only.
“There is this expectation that you will wave a wand and there will be a new pill or new surgery to alleviate your pain, and that is not likely to happen,” Turk said. “Chronic pain is a complex problem, and the only way to treat it is with a combination of treatments because no one treatment is sufficient.”
This means a holistic approach is needed to alleviate pain, Turk continued. According to the analysis, social, emotional and environmental factors all play a role in patients’ pain experience.
According to WebMD, some ways to reduce chronic pain include exercise, meditation, avoiding alcohol, cutting smoking, practicing better eating habits, keeping a pain journal for doctors, scheduling relaxation and distraction.
The analysis was published in The Lancet.