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Bringing back of learning: Advanced Pain Management Study day ADHB

In May Jose Mathews attended the Advanced Pain Management Study Day at ADHB. Jose shares what she learnt below:


Pain is “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with, or resembling that associated with, actual or potential tissue damage.”(International association for the study of pain).

*Pain is always a personal experience.

*A person’s report of an experience as pain should be respected.

*Pain has adverse effects on functional, social and psychological well-being.

*Pain can be expressed through verbal and non-verbal means of communication.

There are two types of pain:- Acute and chronic pain.

Acute pain- Acute pain usually comes on suddenly and is caused by something specific such as burns, cuts, bee sting, infection, broken bones, surgery, dental work and child birth. The pain occurs for a short period of time (less than three months) and goes away when there is no longer an underlying cause. Acute pain can range from mild to severe and is important for survival as it warns us of actual or potential harm to our body. The therapy of acute pain is aimed at treating the underlying cause and interrupting the nociceptive signals. The treatments include both pharmacological like paracetamol, NSAIDS, Opioids, steroids and gabapentinoids and non-pharmacological treatment like physiotherapy, exercise, yoga, massage, heat and cold application, rest and elevation.

Chronic pain– Chronic pain is the pain that lasts longer than three months. It outlasts normal time of healings, if associated with a disease or injury. Chronic pain may arise from psychological status, serves no biological purpose, and has no recognisable end point. Many types of chronic pain are headache, arthritis, cancer, nerve pain, back pain and fibromyalgia. The therapy of chronic pain must rely on a multi-disciplinary approach and should involve more than one therapeutic modality. The goals of treatment are to reduce your pain and increase your ability to do things you want to do. While medications are a useful option for treating short term pain, they are not very effective option for treating chronic pain and when used in long-term, can have more side effects. Fortunately, there are a number of strategies to help you live well with pain.

*Learn to accept the pain, change the way you think about the pain.

*Stay active, Pace yourself.

*Identify triggers, Identify strategies to help you manage stress.

*Distract yourself, learn about mindfulness.

*Consider non-medication treatment, have a support network.

*Consider non opioid pain relief medications.

Jose Mathew – Ward RN. Information following on from attending the Advanced Pain Management Study Day at ADHB in May 2022