Request for Information: Guidance on Current Education Curricula for Health Care Professionals Regarding Pain and Opioid Misuse and Use Disorder

NIH has issued a Request for Information to gather input from the scientific research and medical education communities and the general public regarding the Centers for Excellence in Pain Education (CoEPEs) program, gene...
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Spinal Cord Stimulation in Chronic Pain: Evidence and Theory for Mechanisms of Action

In this review, we reconstruct the available basic science and clinical literature that offers support for mechanisms of both paresthesia spinal cord stimulation (P-SCS) and paresthesia-free spinal cord stimulation (PF-S...
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Outcomes of Sympathetic Blocks in the Management of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: A Retrospective Cohort Study

Background: Sympathetic dysfunction may be present in complex regional pain syndrome, and sympathetic blocks are routinely performed in practice. To investigate the therapeutic and predictive values of sympathetic blocks, the authors test the hypotheses that sympathetic blocks provide analgesic effects that may be associated with the temperature differences between the two extremities before and after the blocks and that the effects of sympathetic blocks may predict the success (defined as achieving more than 50% pain reduction) of spinal cord stimulation trials.  

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How Should Medical Education Better Prepare Physicians for Opioid Prescribing?

 Abstract: Opioid overprescribing is a key contributor to the current crisis. Changing how ethics is taught in connection with opioid prescribing is one area for improvement. In US medical schools, current training in ethics and opioid prescribing is variable, incorporating a diverse range of concepts, teaching modes, assessment strategies, and faculty experience.

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Pain Catastrophizing and Distress Intolerance: Prediction of Pain and Emotional Stress Reactivity

Abstract: Exposure to stress is associated with poor outcomes in people with chronic pain. Dispositional variables, such as pain catastrophizing and distress intolerance, may impact reactivity to stressors. Importantly, these variables can be modified with treatment. The aim of this study was to investigate whether pain catastrophizing and distress intolerance were associated with tolerance of a pain stressor or a psychosocial stressor, and heightened negative affect following these stressors.

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The Operative Treatment of Shoulder Pain in Patients with a Concurrent Diagnosis of Cervical Spondylosis and Shoulder Dysfunction

Abstract: Background: Etiology of neck and shoulder pain may be multifactorial. When surgical intervention is indicated, the choice of whether to start with spine or shoulder surgery is an important clinical decision to make based on severity of pathologies, comorbidities, and patient preference. The literature includes with very few studies exploring the incidence or results of the surgical treatment paths followed in this clinical situation. This study compares patient-reported outcomes of patients with both cervical spine and shoulder pathology who underwent intervention for cervical, shoulder, or both pathologies.

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Macrophage-Derived Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 is a Key Neurotrophic and Nerve-Sensitizing Factor in Pain Associated with Endometriosis

Macrophages are central to the pathophysiology of endometriosis: they dictate the growth and vascularization of endometriosis lesions and more recently have been shown to promote lesion innervation. The aim of this study was to determine the mechanistic role of macrophages in producing pain associated with endometriosis.  

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Could a Blood Test Measure Your Pain and Mood? One Startup Believes It Can

A medical startup called MindX Sciences are working to develop a blood test using biomarker technology for those conditions that have previously been so hard to measure, including pain.   Full story.
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CMS Releases Proposed Rule for the 2020 Physician Fee Schedule

On July 29, 2019, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule that includes proposals to update payment policies, payment rates, and quality provisions for services furnished under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) on or after January1, 2020. CMS is requesting comments on the proposed rule by September 27, 2019, and a final rule is expected to be released in November. The proposed rule estimates a conversion factor (CF) of $36.09 which is a slight increase from the 2019 CF of $36.04. 

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AAPM Welcomes Former APS and AIPM Members

The recent dissolutions of the American Pain Society (APS) as well as the Academy of Integrative Pain Management (AIPM) have deeply disheartened AAPM leaders and members. In acknowledgement of dues already paid to APS an...
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