Monthly Archives: December 2015

Descriptive ways of Pain Assessment and Management

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Prior to treatment that begins in a pain management center that you visit, there are things that you need to take care. You have to look into the precise treatment assessment and management methods of the center to see if they are able to provide you with the most effective treatment to fight back pain.

The pain management center or clinic wherever you might visit, you will find that they are able to help you to acquire both the assessment and management prior to any other ways.

Pain specialist in Las Vegas opens up the details of the assessment techniques, which they adopt in their center to provide quality, and recognized treatment options.

The pain management centers have a multidisciplinary approach, with the focus on –

  • Chronic level of pain
  • Severity of the pain
  • Quality of the pain
  • Contributing factor related to pain
  • Location or etiology of pain if you can identify the place
  • Mechanism of injury in case if it is applicable
  • Barriers to pain assessment

Pain specialists in Las Vegas categories the pain in two scales

Pain specialists in Las Vegas categories the pain scales

Single dimensional

It is one of the effective ways to measure pain through single dimension, with the use of patient self-reporting technique, measurement of the pain intensity. These scales are useful for the acute pain when the etiology is clear to the patient.

Multidimensional

Well, in this scales you get to measure the intensity, nature and the location of the pain as well. In some of the popular cases, the impact of the pain is also predictable. It keeps a close tab on the patients’ activity or mood and is useful in dealing with complex pain management.

Pain assessment method for the aging is a little different in the clinics. It follows –

  • Reporting of the discomfort faced by the patients
  • Use of pain to mask new developing physical disabilities
  • Decrease in the vision and hearing abilities

Pain assessment method

For the elderly people, verbal descriptor scales are also put to use, as it may be the easiest one of them. It just requires words from the aging person to describe the type of pain they are suffering from.

Pain assessment method in the infants is also different and it keeps on varying –

  • Well, for them there is 5 variable which are often used such as crying, requirement of oxygen, vital signs, expression and sleeplessness and you have to provide marks of 0 to 2 to assess the neonatal pain
  • For the kids, there is yet another behavioral pain scale, which uses three factors like crying, movement and facial expression. But it is applicable for the kids between 2 to 6 months.
  • You will find that limited cognitive skills influence the pain measures largely in the kids. As for the children of 3 to 4 years, the physicians prefer to use self-report measures to alleviate the pain.
  • To know your pain clinic take a quick look in their assessment techniques and ways to manage any type of pain.

Key Notes on Vertebral Compression Fractures

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Vertebral compression fractures are related to the vertebral collapse and is a result of either a trauma or a predisposing condition like osteoporosis, osteogenesis imperfecta, benign or metastatic tumours, etc. Underlying infections might also result in this disorder. The first stage of treatment of vertebral compression fractures involves non-invasive therapies like pharmacological treatment, use of braces, physical therapy, etc. However, if symptoms continue to persist and the disorder assumes a chronic form, the minimally invasive therapies involving kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty might need to be used to bring relief to patients from the painful symptoms of vertebral compression fractures.

vertebral compression fracture

In a study by the prestigious magazine, Spine, researchers have examined over 1 million patients to evaluate the results of vertebral compression fracture treatment methodologies involving kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty. Out of the total population, 75,364 patients underwent vertebroplasty while 141,343 patients were treated using balloon kyphoplasty procedure. Besides these surgical techniques, the rest of the population were administered conventional, non-invasive treatments. The following are the keynotes of this study:

  1. Patients who were part of the non-operative cohort group exhibited a 25% and 55% higher adjusted risks of mortality than those of the vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty groups. The vertebroplasty group had 19% higher adjusted risk than the patients of the kyphoplasty group.This indicates that the kyphoplasty group has a lower overall risk than the other two groups.
  2. The nonoperative cohorts had a higher adjusted risk of myocardial infarctions, pneumonia, urinary tract infection, etc., than the kyphoplasty group. The kyphoplasty cohorts, on the other hand, had a higher adjusted risk for subsequent augmentation/augmentation fusion and other respiratory complications.
  3. Individuals of the kyphoplasty group had significantly lower morbidity than those of the other two groups. However, the chances of development of myocardial infarction, deep venous thrombosis, infections and hear complications were similar in cases of both vertebroplasty cohorts and kyphoplasty cohorts.

Vertebral Compression Fractures percentage

Thus, from the above study report it can be concluded that kyphoplasty and vertebroplasty had definite positive results on patients of vertebral compression fractures. However, the former was even more effective than the latter in its efficiency of results. Kyphoplasty bore more fruitful results than vertebroplasty. However, the risks associated with both these surgeries were almost similar.

Since chronic cases of vertebral compression fractures are usually associated with morbidity, it is important to treat this disorder with kyphoplasty or vertebroplasty before the symptoms and condition worsens. If conventional, non-operative therapies fail, the minimally invasive therapies usually help alleviate the condition to some extent.

Since vertebral compression fractures are complex disorders, it is extremely important for thee patients to seek help only from the best pain management doctors. If you are a resident of Las Vegas and suspect a case of vertebral compression fracture affecting you or one of your family members, then a visit to a pain clinic in Las Vegas could be your doorway to helping hands. The best doctors always try to cure the disease in the minimally invasive way but surgery is often unavoidable in certain cases.

Recent pain management advances and new challenges

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pain management advances and new challenges

In the past several years, a number of small and large incremental advances have been made in the sphere of pain management. Greater understanding about the molecular mechanism underlying the symptoms of acute and chronic pain have assisted researchers in developing targeted therapies to treat such conditions.

The conventional medications used for pain treatment included NSAID’s, muscle relaxants and steroid injections. However, a new era of pain management drugs has just begun. An insight into the neurotransmitter system has equipped scientists with the knowledge to manipulate these chemical messengers in a way that alleviates the sensation of pain. This has led to the use of antidepressants and other drugs that modulate the brain’s perception of pain for pain management.

Las Vegas pain management

MRI imaging of patients’ brain has shown clear evidence of the areas of the brain activated by pain stimulus. There is also a new understanding of what is referred to as the ‘central sensitization process’ which explains how an untreated painful condition could lead to changes in the central nervous system rendering it more sensitive over time.

The new advances in knowledge helps pain specialists like the Las Vegas pain management doctors to treat pain from different angles (Meet The Doctors). Innovative drugs which target specific molecular pathways, drug pumps that deliver painkillers effectively to the target nerve endings, receptor blockers, etc., are revolutionizing the way both acute and chronic pain is managed. The establishment of the mind-body connection through extensive research in this field has also led to the adoption of psychotherapy and alternative treatment procedures that provides relief from psychotic and chronic pain.

New advances in pain management strategies

New advances in pain management strategies also include the use of cutting edge technology by Las Vegas pain management doctors to deliver the medications to the target area as well as physical procedures for alleviation of pain. In radio frequency ablation, a small portion of the nerve tissue in the affected area is heated to reduce the sensitization to pain. The TENS therapy uses low level electric currents to numb the nerves while pain pacemakers are built on similar principles and are implanted inside the body to block pain stimulations.

The advances in new drugs and technologies to treat pain has left pain management doctors with a wide array of choices. Despite this fact, deciding on a pain management schedule for treatment is not easily applicable because of the lack of consensus in the medical fraternity and the clinical and liability risks associated with such processes. The primary reason of lack of consensus is the high variation in the demands of patients with some seeking medical assistance for every ache and pain. Stubborn patients leads to doctors complying to their demands while others tend to adopt a more conservative approach to treat pain. The latter may end up being criticized by the patients who feel their needs are not properly addressed. Because of these reasons, pain treatment protocols greatly vary and lacks uniformity. Accidental deaths caused by improper use of prescription pain killers is a reality and doctors are often influenced by such factors while selecting pain treatment protocols. All these factors pose significant challenges in pain management strategies where external forces often prevail over a medical judgement by the doctor.