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General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

[Repost] Women’s pain: Common, treatable and often overlooked or mismanaged — ScienceDaily

Women’s pain: Common, treatable and often overlooked or mismanaged — ScienceDaily.

Excerpts from the 19 January article


“I can’t tell you the number of women I see who have been told they just have to live with the pain,” Dr. Thomas said. “It’s just heart breaking because many of these women have been suffering a long time. Women, especially older women, are less likely to speak up and seek treatment for their pain.”
Credit: Image courtesy of American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA)

Despite the variety of effective treatments, and physicians who specialize in treating pain, women often suffer unnecessarily from conditions ranging from backaches to pain after cancer surgery, and also treat their pain with medications that may be ineffective and possibly harmful, according to a review of research related to women and pain by the American Society of Anesthesiologists® (ASA®).

ASA conducted the literature review and issued the Women’s Pain Update to help raise awareness of the many options available to women for controlling both acute and chronic pain, and how a pain medicine specialist can help them choose the right treatment. Among other things, the studies showed that remedies such as music, yoga and rose oil are proven effective for several types of pain, that opioids are often used inappropriately, and that the type of anesthesia used during breast cancer surgery can affect how quickly and comfortably a woman recovers from the operation.

Physician anesthesiologists are doctors who focus on anesthesia and critical care medicine and are among the medical specialists who are experts in the subspecialty of pain medicine, seeing patients in private practices and pain clinics.

Donna-Ann Thomas, M.D., a member of ASA’s Committee on Pain Medicine, frequently sees women who have been suffering in silence for years, with conditions such as a type of back pain that can develop after childbirth, and chronic pain after breast cancer surgery.

“I can’t tell you the number of women I see who have been told they just have to live with the pain,” Dr. Thomas said of women who come to her with sciatica, a type of back pain that radiates down the leg. “It’s just heart breaking because many of these women have been suffering a long time. Women, especially older women, are less likely to speak up and seek treatment for their pain.”

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January 21, 2015 - Posted by | Consumer Health | , , , , , , ,

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