Pain Management encompasses using pharmaceutical drugs, without pharmaceutical assistance, as well as other approaches. The goal of Pain Management is to prevent, reduce, or stop pain sensations. Management of your pain requires knowledge of its nature and intensity. This is complicated by the different causes and types of pain. Read more to learn about Pain and Pain Management.
What is Pain?
Pain is how the peripheral nervous system warns the central nervous system of injury or potential injury to the body.
The central nervous system comprises the brain and spinal cord. The peripheral nervous system is made up of the nerves that communicate with the central nervous system. The peripheral nervous system includes all nerves of the body except the brain and spinal cord.
Pain is transmitted to the central nervous system like a message from nociceptors. The nociceptors are special peripheral nervous system nerve cells. These cells respond to different stimuli depending on their location. For example: nociceptors of the skin are stimulated by pressure, temperature, and chemical changes.
Pain, Sensory Nerves & the Brain…
When a nociceptor is stimulated, neurotransmitters are released within the cell. Neurotransmitters are chemicals found within the nervous system that facilitate nerve cell communication. The nociceptor transmits its signal to nerve cells within the spinal cord. The spinal cord then conveys the pain message to the thalamus region in the brain.
Once the brain has received and processed the pain message and coordinated an appropriate response, pain has served its purpose. The body uses natural pain killers, called endorphins, that are meant to derail further pain messages from the same source.
However, these natural pain killers may not adequately dampen a continuing pain message. Also, depending on how the brain has processed the pain information, certain hormones, such as prostaglandins, may be released.
These hormones enhance the pain message and play a role in immune system responses to injury, such as inflammation. Certain neurotransmitters actively enhance the pain message at the injury site and within the spinal cord.
Two Types of Pain
Pain Management treatment generally divides pain into two categories, acute and chronic.
Nociceptive pain is also called acute pain. This pain is transmitted by nociceptors. It is associated with:
- Many other conditions.
It usually stops once the condition that caused it is resolved.
Continuous pain can induce changes in the spinal cord and the central nervous system. In the past, Pain Management options included severing a nerve’s connection to the central nervous system. But no sensory information from that nerve may cause pain transmitted in the spinal cord to become worse.
Evidence shows that constant pain or the complete lack of nerve signals increases the number of pain receptors in the spinal cord. Nerve cells in the spinal cord may also begin secreting pain-amplifying chemicals. This adds to the actual pain signals from the body. Immune chemicals, primarily cytokines, may play a prominent role in such changes.
Scientists continue to study the relationship between depression and chronic pain. One survey was on California adults in 2004 diagnosed with major depressive disorder. It revealed that more than one-half of them also suffered from chronic pain.
We provide compassionate Pain Management, treating the mind, body and spirit as a whole. We use several different pain treatment options and can help you improve your quality of life.
Pain Management Treatment Options
Some types of Pain Management therapies include the following:
- Soft Tissue Injections.
- Trigger Point Injections.
- Joint Injections.
- Caudal Injections.
- Epidural Injections.
- Transforaminal Injections.
- Facet Joint Injections.
Dr. David P. Suarez is specially trained in Pain Management. He will help you find the most suitable Pain Management option to improve both your quality of life and your health.
Pain Management Staten Island.