Geriatricians like Dr. Brandon Verdoorn see the wide range of effects of chronic pain on older patients. Minor, short-lived pain can be managed at home with ice, heat or over-the-counter medication.
If you have severe pain, persistent pain or pain that affects function, you should see your health care provider to determine the underlying cause and develop a pain management plan. That might mean physical therapy, exercise, massage or acupuncture.
Medication strategies often are used, too — typically starting with lower-risk approaches like acetaminophen and topical medications, and reserving higher-risk medications for more difficult cases.
From a Cornell University news release:
“Another behavior change is physical exercise,” Pillemer said. “A paradox of pain is that exercise helps reduce it, but it’s difficult for people in pain to think about exercising. So they don’t exercise, they get more sedentary and the pain increases; it’s a vicious circle. So how do you get people to actually change their behavior?”
More than 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain – outnumbering those affected by heart disease, diabetes and cancer combined.
To develop innovative approaches to pain management, a team of behavioral and social science researchers on Cornell’s Ithaca campus, clinical researchers at Weill Cornell Medicine and computer scientists at Cornell Tech has received a five-year, $3 million grant from the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
From a VentureBeat.com online review:
Kaia’s iOS and Android apps were developed with the help of physiotherapists, pain management physicians, orthopedic surgeons, and clinical psychologists, the company claims, and are registered as Class 1 medical devices with the Food and Drug Administration. They serve up video clips covering basic back and COPD pain information and step-by-step physiotherapy exercises, in addition to psychological strategies, such as mindfulness and muscle relaxation.
During each of the over 120 15-minute exercises, in-app computer vision models track connective points on the body through a device’s front-facing camera while an on-screen wireframe model illustrates the steps. Audio feedback informs users whether they’re performing exercises correctly and how they might improve, and a built-in chat tool allows them to consult with a physiotherapist or sports scientist on questions related to specific moves.
Discover the latest tools used to diagnose and treat back and neck pain. Series: “UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine presents Mini Medical School for the Public”
0:24 – Defining the Problem – Vinil Shah, MD
10:13 – A Surgeon’s Perspective – Aaron Clark, MD, PhD
32:57 – Spine Imaging and Pain Intervention – Cynthia Chin, MD
58:24 – Precision Spine Imaging: What the Future Holds – Vinil Shah, MD
1:06:50 – Audience Questions