Comprehensive Pain Management
(Formally known as Franklin Pain and Wellness and Warwick Pain)

Attleboro, MA(508) 236-8333
Franklin, MA(508) 507-8818
South Kingstown, RI (401) 234-9677
Warwick, RI(401) 352-0007

Franklin, MA • (508) 507-8818
Warwick, RI • (401) 352-0007
South Kingstown, RI • (401) 234-9677

Warwick Pain Center RI Blog

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Managing Chronic Pain at Work

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, May 24, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Warwick, RI

More people are trying to stay on the job despite chronic pain. Find out how you can integrate your pain management plan into your workday.

Besides providing a way to make a living, working can be very important to people living with chronic pain and dealing with chronic pain management. Remaining on the job is a tremendous boost to the self-esteem of people with chronic pain. The challenges of work and the social interactions that take place on the job may even serve to distract you from your pain. Research has found that those who return to work enjoy greater success in their pain management.

A recent survey found that one of every four working people in the United States experiences chronic pain — an increase of nearly 40 percent from a decade earlier, yet nearly 9 out of 10 people living with chronic pain choose to remain on the job rather than stay home. Nearly all said only severe pain would keep them home from work.

Unfortunately, pain can keep you from being an effective employee. That same survey found that about half of chronic pain patients who remain in the workplace engage in "presenteeism" — they are present at work, but their chronic pain sometimes or often prevents them from performing their job.

Manage Pain in the Workplace

Pain management on the job is possible, but requires that employees with chronic pain take a proactive approach to the challenges they face. Effective coping skills include:

Advocate for yourself. Don't feel as though you have to manage pain in silence. Talk to your human resources department about accommodations that could help minimize your pain and maximize your productivity. If you feel comfortable, talk with your boss and co-workers about your pain so they can understand and possibly assist in your pain management practices.

Set priorities. Be aware of your limitations and your health, and don't push yourself in ways that will cause a setback in your pain management efforts. Say no when you need to.

Take breaks. Use regular breaks as a way to bring your pain management practices into the workplace. If getting up and stretching helps your chronic pain, be sure to do so. Some people find that taking a few minutes to meditate in a quiet place helps them manage pain. Others squeeze in a short walk during lunch to gain the benefits of additional exercise.

Adopt healthy habits. On or off the job, you can help your pain management efforts by eating well and exercising. Inquire about any wellness programs offered by your employer; these can be a valuable source of information about healthy living. And be sure to stay on top of taking your prescribed pain medications.

Tweak your workspace. Examine your work area for ways to minimize pain and make you more comfortable. Ergonomic tools like special office chairs, hand rests, foot rests, keyboard trays, and telephone headsets can be tremendously helpful, and many employers will provide these items for you, especially if they understand the benefits.

Be aware of pain management options. Ask your doctor about new ways to deal with your chronic pain and if sessions with an occupational therapist could help you make on-the-job pain management strategies more effective. A therapist also can provide exercises and coping skills tailored to your particular ailment.

Staying at or returning to work can be a helpful component of pain management. By following certain strategies, you can be more productive and experience less pain while benefiting from being around other people on the job. For more information on chronic pain management, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in Warwick, RI.

Source: everydayhealth.com

Common Nerve Block Procedures for Chronic Pain

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, May 10, 2018
Comprehensive Pain Management - Warwick, RI

What are some of the more common nerve block procedures for the treatment of chronic pain? What are some of the common side effects associated with these nerve blocks?

The vast majority of injections done for the diagnosis or treatment of chronic pain are performed on an outpatient basis. Some are performed on inpatients, who may be already hospitalized for other reasons. All of them may be performed under fluoroscopic (x-ray) guidance but are sometime performed in the office without x-ray. Below is a brief description of some of the more commonly performed nerve blocks by pain management specialists.

Epidural Steroid injection: Epidural steroid injection is an injection performed in the back or neck in an attempt to place some anti-inflammatory steroid with or without a local anesthetic into the epidural space close to the inflamed area that is causing the pain. These injections are generally done for pain involving the back and leg or the neck and arm/hand. They may be done under x-ray guidance. Epidural steroid injections may be placed in the lumbar (low back), thoracic (mid back), or cervical (neck) regions.

Facet Joint Injection: The facet joints assist with movement of the spine both in the neck and back. Injection into these joints can provide relief of neck and back pain; these injections are always performed under x-ray guidance. You will be on your stomach for this injection if it is done for back pain; however you may either be on your stomach or back if the injection is performed for neck pain, depending on the preference of the physician. This block is often a diagnostic block and a more long lasting injection may be indicated if you have significant pain relief from this injection.

Lumbar Sympathetic Block: A lumbar sympathetic nerve block is performed for pain in the leg that is thought to be caused by complex regional pain syndrome type I (or CRPS I). These injections are often performed under fluoroscopic (x-ray) guidance.

Celiac Plexus Block: A celiac plexus block is generally performed to relieve pain in patients with cancer of the pancreas or other chronic abdominal pains. A needle is placed via your back that deposits numbing medicine to the area of a group of nerves called the celiac plexus. This injection is often performed as a diagnostic injection to see whether a more permanent injection may help with the pain. If it provides significant pain relief then the more long lasting injection may be done.

Stellate Ganglion Block: A stellate ganglion block is an injection that can be performed for the diagnosis of complex regional pain syndrome of the arm or hand or for treatment of pain to that area. It can also be used to help to improve blood flow to the hand or arm in certain conditions that result in poor circulation of the hand.

For more information on treating chronic pain, contact Comprehensive Pain Management in Warwick, RI.

Source: asra.com


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