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Pain Management

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Pain Management

Pain can be simple or complex depending on the cause of the pain. Though there are many sources of pain they have been categorised into two groups: nociceptive pain and neuropathic pain. There are many factors that influence how one feels pain. They include age, gender, emotional well-being. Understanding the cause and learning effective ways to cope with your pain can improve your quality of life.

Nociceptive Pain

When something hurts, we become aware of it because the damaged tissue or injury triggers pain signals. These signals travels through the spinal cord to the brain through peripheral nerves. Arm pain, leg pain and back pain are examples of this type of pain.

Radicular pain is a type of nociceptive pain that originates when the nerve roots are irritated. The pain radiates to arm or leg. Herniated disc is a typical example of this type of pain. This pain is associated with loss of reflexes, tingling sensation, numbness and weakness (radiculopathy).

Neuropathic Pain

This type of pain is related to nerves. When something happens to the nerves (damage or disease affects the nerves) or nerves get hurt, we feel the pain. Though there is no apparent source of this pain, it can occur spontaneously. Peripheral neuropathy is a classic example of this type of pain.

Other causes of pain include headaches, plantar fasciitis, myofasciitis, torticollis, piriformis syndrome, compression fractures, coccydynia, peripheral nerve pain, facial pain, post-herpetic neuralgia, Trigeminal neuralgia and cancer pain.

There are many options for treating pain – such as pain relieving medicines, physiotherapy, lifestyle changes, therapies, medications, mind-body techniques acupuncture, acupressure, chiropractic care, drug delivery to trigger points, spinal drug delivery, nerve block injections, electro-thermal therapy, magnetotherapy, epidural steroid injections, mind and body techniques, occupational therapy, hydrotherapy, relaxation techniques and meditation, cognitive behavioural therapy, and other psychological techniques.

The Sunshine Department of Pain Management has an experienced team of pain management specialists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and supportive staff to manage acute, chronic and pain related to cancer.

We manage a broad spectrum of pain, which includes, but not restricted to the following: backache, headache, neck pain, pain after surgery, arthritis pain, sympathetic dystrophy, post herpetic pain, neuropathy, fibromyalgia, neuralgia, and cancer pain.

Medical Pain Management

Medical pain management involves treatment of pain by using medicines: pain killers, analgesics, muscle relaxants and sedatives. The treatment is of short duration – may last for two to four weeks or may be longer than that depending on the condition. In addition to medicines, doctors recommend some exercises, physiotherapy and other activities to the patients according to a customised treatment plan to provide supportive care so that the pain can be effectively managed.

The other means of managing pain include:

Manipulative Therapy: use of lumbar supports, cervical collars, orthoses and supports, massage (soft tissue techniques), auto-stretching of soft tissues and passive mobilization of joints, passive stretching of soft tissues.

Superficial heat therapy (paraffin wax, infrared radiations, hot moist packs, heat pads) and deep heat therapy (electrothermal therapy by using low frequency currents; Interferential therapy using medium frequency currents; microwave diathermy, short wave diathermy using medium frequency currents).

Advanced pain management techniques include: Radiofrequency Denervation, Peripheral Nerve Stimulation, Motor Cortex Stimulation, Intrathecal Drug Delivery System, Deep Brain Stimulation, Spinal Cord Stimulation, and Cryo-analgesia.

Alternate Therapies include biofeedback, acupuncture, meditation, hypnosis, behavioural therapy and stress management.

Nerve block for pain relief: Botulinum Toxin Therapy, Occipital Nerve Block, Trigeminal Ganglion Block, Cervical Medial Branch Block, Cervical Facet Joint Injection, Cervical Interlaminar Epidural Injection, Cervical Transforaminal Epidural Injection, Stellate Ganglion Block, Glossopharyngeal Nerve Block, Atlanto-Occipital & Atlanto-Axial Injections, Sphenopalatine Ganglion Block and Trigger point injection.

Interventions for pain relief: Lower limb (sole foot injections, knee joint injections, lateral cutaneous nerve block; and Upper limb (carpal tunnel injection, shoulder joint injections).

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