Tag Archives: PAIN-DAMAGE

Chronic pain is associated with a brain aging biomarker

Chronic pain is associated with a brain aging biomarker in community-dwelling older adults: PAINPAINMay 2019 – Research Paper

This “finding” doesn’t surprise me one bit; my mental faculties have long been deteriorating faster than others in my cohort.

Chronic pain is associated with brain atrophy with limited evidence on its impact in the older adult’s brain.

We aimed to determine the associations between chronic pain and a brain aging biomarker in persons aged 60 to 83 years old

Individuals with chronic pain (n = 33) had “older” brains for their age compared with those without.    Continue reading

Not All Pain Is the Same: Extent of High-Impact Chronic Pain

Not All Pain Is the Same: Characterizing the Extent of High-Impact Chronic Painpainresearchforum.org – Epidemiological findings highlight the need for patient-centered care –  by Stephani Sutherland – Apr 2019

Chronic pain exacts a huge toll on patients, healthcare systems, and the economy. But the way that chronic pain is typically defined—by how long it lasts—provides little information about

  1. the people suffering from chronic pain,
  2. the degree to which they are affected, and
  3. how to best treat them.

These days, chronic pain seems defined mostly by how many milligrams of an opioid need to be taken to make it bearable. The patient’s specific condition is considered irrelevant.

This is a sad side effect of medical pain: because it is only perceptible to the patient suffering from it, the easily accessible numerical measure of medication is used instead (scientific laziness, bordering on fraud).  Continue reading

Treating chronic pain can restore normal brain function

Effective Treatment of Chronic Low Back Pain in Humans Reverses Abnormal Brain Anatomy and Function | Journal of Neuroscience – Free full-text article – May 2011

Though also not new, this study is a follow up on an earlier post: Brain abnormalities are Consequence Not Cause of pain (2009). The article below contains dozens of links to further information.

Abstract:

Chronic pain is associated with reduced brain gray matter and impaired cognitive ability.

In this longitudinal study, we assessed whether neuroanatomical and functional abnormalities were reversible and dependent on treatment outcomes.     Continue reading

Inflammation → Hyperalgesia → Chronic Pain

C-reactive protein and cold-pressor tolerance in the general population: PAIN – July 2017

I’m reposting this study because it explains that hyperalgesia, which is blamed on opioids, arises from chronic inflammation and the numerous chemical changes this causes in the body over time.

Pain and inflammation are related:

systemic inflammation may lead to a variety of pain states, and, in turn, persistent pain causes an upward adjustment of proinflammatory mediators that sometimes elicit a prolonged low-grade immune response, leading to long-lasting, subclinical inflammation.
Continue reading

Emotional Impact of Pain

Emotional Impact of Pain | Pain Management & Understanding | Arthritis.org

Although it may feel like it’s coming from your joints, pain – particularly the chronic pain common to arthritis – is also an expression of your state of mind.

If you’re depressed or anxious, you’ll very likely hurt more than when your mood is lighter or more balanced.

The crucial distinction is that depression or anxiety will only worsen *pre-existing* pain, not create new pain.

The fact that pain itself is depressing and worrying only makes the problem worse.  Continue reading

Patients Suffer From Poor Pain Assessment Tools

LEVD Wound Patients Suffer From Poor Pain Assessment Tools – Pain Medicine News – June 2018 – W. Harry Fortuna

Though this article is specific to wounds from lower extremity vascular disease (LEVD), it could apply to any type of chronic pain

The lack of a comprehensive, holistic evaluation procedure is the biggest barrier to the proper care for patients with chronic neuropathic pain, according to researchers.

Last month, Ms. Newbern published an integrative review analyzing the available literature on the methods for identifying pain and quality-of-life (QOL) effects of chronic wounds caused by lower extremity vascular disease (LEVD).   Continue reading

Suicidality in chronic pain

Suicidality in chronic pain: a review of the prevalence, risk factors and psychological links. – PubMed – May 2006

This study was done over 10 years ago, when the “crackdown” on opioids was just beginning. Since then, the situation for pain patients has become infinitely worse and many no longer have access to effective pain

Increasing numbers of pain patients are committing suicide because there is no other relief from their crushing pain.  Continue reading

Opioid Lawsuits Threaten Lives of Pain Sufferers

Opioid Lawsuits Threaten Lives of Pain Sufferers–  April 28, 2018 by Lynn Webster, M.D.

Implications for People With Chronic Pain

Several lawsuits have been filed against several opioid manufacturers, distributors, and physicians for participating in what was allegedly a scheme to cause incalculable harm for profit. I am one of the physicians named as an alleged “conspirator.”

The opioid lawsuits are far more than legal matters that involve the defendants. They also have serious implications for people in pain.   Continue reading

Pain as a risk factor for common mental disorders

Pain as a risk factor for common mental disorders. Results from the Netherlands Mental Health Survey and Incidence Study-2: a longitudinal, population-based study – PAIN: April 2018

I’ve read too many articles that insinuate chronic pain arises from pre-existing mental issues and claim the focus should be on the mental disorder more than the pain. (This is part of the popular idea of “catastrophizing“)

But this article makes it clear that pain leads to “psychological” disorders, not the other way around as many would like us to believe. It is known that the unremitting assault by pain is a form of chronic stress that damages brain structure and connectivity.   Continue reading

7 Ways that Chronic Pain Changes the Brain

7 Ways that Chronic Pain Changes the Brain – by Margaret Aranda, MD – July 2017

An automated meta-analysis of 420 imaging studies – pain’s effect on the brain.

Neurosynth.org uses functional connectivity and coactivation mapping from thousands of MRI images (each comprised of many cuts of images) are automated to show a final result of pain’s effect on the brain. Created and maintained by Tal Yarkoni. Supported by NIH Grant R01MH096906.   Continue reading