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Long term pain and pain management

The management of pain within physiotherapy includes the use of physical options such as the application of ice and/or heat. We also use acupuncture, electrotherapy modalities, and exercises to achieve pain control.

The service also has qualified supplementary prescribers within physiotherapy who can advice on medication and prescribe accordingly within the limits of an agreed clinical management plan with your GP. A patient centred approach is used within our consultations whether in groups or with individuals with the aim of granting the patient control over their treatment as far as is possible.

Exacerbations of chronic or long term pain is often not readily associated with injury or cause. Often pain can be felt in the absence of any injury at all, which can be very confusing and frustrating for both patient and physiotherapist. For this reason, it is important that chronic pain is not approached in the same way as the type of pain that we are all too familiar with - the pain from a pulled muscle.

Research has shown that the most appropriate way of tackling chronic pain involves approaches from a range of disciplines. Current physiotherapy thinking uses the ideas of Melzak and Wall on the pain gate, ideas from cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) an evidence based psychological approach, relaxation approaches and the use of goal setting and paced exercise.

We use this approach in our Escape programmes for knee pain and low back pain.

Pain management approaches can be useful in a range of conditions, such as fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis pain and chronic low back pain but can be of value within the physiotherapeutic approach in general as it offers to both physiotherapist and patient a way that can achieve constructive results from consultations.

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