Book Notes

April 28, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Mayo Clinic Guide to Pain Relief

Chronic pain can affect your daily functioning. You may become less productive, feel weak and depressed, and even find yourself avoiding hobbies and other enjoyable activities, because you’re concerned they may cause further injury or pain.  Take heart. There are pain management strategies that can help you reclaim your life.

Mayo Clinic Guide to Pain Relief teaches you how to manage, reduce and control chronic pain. It emphasizes a take-charge approach that provides detailed information and instructions on a variety of strategies to help you control pain. Strategies include goal setting, daily exercise, activity modification, and stress reduction techniques. The book also reviews medication use, discussing when it may be useful and why medications often aren’t the answer to long-term pain control.

Mayo Clinic Guide to Pain Relief is divided into three sections. The first section provides information about the mechanism of chronic pain: how pain develops, what influences pain, and why some pain persists. The nervous system is explained in an easy-to-understand description, along with pain response, natural painkillers and pain enhancers. Acute pain versus chronic pain is reviewed as well as an explanation of how sensitization can amplify the pain message. Common types of chronic pain are discussed including arthritis, back pain, fibromyalgia, headache, neck pain, strain injuries, and peripheral neuropathy.

The second section details options for treating pain and reviews treatments such as injections given at pain sites, nerve stimulators, medication pumps, and alternative and complementary therapies. Types of pain clinics, centers and programs are reviewed, as well as how to choose the one right for you.

Section three covers the management of chronic pain. Often there isn’t an effective treatment for pain, such as a medication that can make the pain disappear. The section teaches how to live with the pain so that it doesn’t interfere with your work, time with your family and friends, and your ability to enjoy life.

Additionally, section three offers strategies for managing chronic pain including stress management, positive thinking, healthy eating, weight control, sleep improvement, emotional and behavioral changes, and improved family relationships.

With Mayo Clinic Guide to Pain Relief , you can learn how to get through bad days and stay in control. You keep track of your accomplishments, review how well you’re meeting your goals, emphasize the positive and develop affirmations. Team up with your doctor to help you prepare for challenges and finally, be sure to reward yourself. You can begin each new day with hope by developing a pain control program and getting on course to life with less pain.

Debbie Fuehrer
Rochester Methodist Hospital
Patients’ Library

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