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Our Approach to Pain Management

Comprehensive, personalized



Pain-relieving medications are the most common method of managing pain. Successful treatment involves choosing the right medication for the specific type and severity of pain. There are opioid, nonopioid and adjuvant pain-relieving medications.

Pharmacotherapy

Pain-relieving medications are the most common method of managing acute or chronic pain. Successful treatment involves choosing the right medication for the specific type and severity of pain. There are both opioid and nonopioid pain-relieving medications.

Opioids

Pain-relieving medications that are similar to opium are used to treat moderate to severe pain. These include:

  • Fentanyl
  • Hydrocodone
  • Hydromorphone
  • Methadone
  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone
  • Oxymorphone

Nonopioids

Pain-relieving medications that are not similar to opium are used to treat mild to moderate pain. These include:

  • Acetaminophen
  • Cox-2 inhibitors
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications

Adjuvants

Medications that enhance the effects of pain-relieving medications include:

  • Anticonvulsants
  • Antidepressants
  • Muscle Relaxants
  • Steroids
  • Topicals (such as pain-relieving salves or ointments for burns)

Complementary/Alternative Therapies

Although the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) does not consider these therapies conventional medicine, more patients are accepting them. Treatments for pain include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Chiropractic
  • Distraction (Methods such as reading, talking and virtual reality can divert attention from pain.)
  • Guided Imagery
  • Heat Therapy and Cold Therapy (These both decrease sensitivity to pain.)
  • Hypnosis
  • Music Therapy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Relaxation (Decreasing stress, reducing muscle tension or remembering pleasant experiences can help reduce pain.)
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)

Pain Assessment

Accurate pain assessment is essential to providing proper therapy.

Education

Continually educating patients and staff is important to our work.

Pain Management Resource Team

We have the region's only nurse-run inpatient pain management team.