This section will include pain research in the news, general stories about research and findings, pain abstracts in the news, and PubMed abstracts

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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The Association Between Antidepressant Treatment and Brain Connectivity in Two Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials: A Treatment Mechanism Study

Antidepressant medications offer an effective treatment for depression, yet nearly 50% of patients either do not respond or have side-effects rendering them unable to continue the course of treatment. Mechanistic studies...
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Prevalence and Risk Factors Associated With Long-Term Opioid Use After Injury Among Previously Opioid-Free Workers.

Using opioids for acute pain can lead to long-term use and associated morbidity and mortality. Injury has been documented as a gateway to long-term opioid use in some populations, but data are limited for injured workers.

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Shifting Brain Circuits in Pain Chronicity

The evaluation of brain changes to a specific pain condition in pediatric and adult patients allows for insights into potential mechanisms of pain chronicity and possibly long-term brain changes. Here we focused on the p...
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Evaluation of Clinical Outcomes in an Interdisciplinary Abdominal Pain Clinic: A Retrospective, Exploratory Review

Pediatric functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) are common and well-accepted to be etiologically complex in terms of the contribution of biological, psychological, and social factors to symptom presentations. Non...
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Managing Cluster Headache

Cluster headache is a neurological disorder that presents with unilateral severe headache associated with ipsilateral cranial autonomic symptoms. Cluster headache attacks often occur more than once a day, and typically m...
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