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Looking ahead: chronic spinal pain management

Authors Parkin-Smith GF, Davies SJ, Amorin-Woods LG

Received 9 March 2017

Accepted for publication 20 July 2017

Published 30 August 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 2089—2095


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Editor who approved publication: Dr E Alfonso Romero-Sandoval

Gregory F Parkin-Smith,1,2 Stephanie J Davies,3–5 Lyndon G Amorin-Woods2,6

1General Practice, Dunsborough WA, Australia; 2School of Health Professions, Murdoch University, Perth, WA, Australia; 3Private Practice Pain Medicine, Painless Clinic, Perth, WA, Australia; 4School of Medicine and Pharmacology, University of Western Australia, Perth, WA, Australia; 5School of Physiotherapy and Exercise Science, Curtin University, Bentley, WA, Australia; 6Private Chiropractic Practice, Canning Vale, WA, Australia

The other day, we oversaw a seminar on pain management for a local consumer pain group, where all consumers (patients) in attendance were experiencing chronic, persistent spinal pain. Each person had a unique story, and their experience and perceived cause of their pain differed. The quality of life in all these consumers was markedly reduced, which was the only clear similarity, confirming that there may be some similarities in the pain experience, but the pain experience was more often unique and individual. These consumers’ criticisms of care services were consistent, however, with dissatisfaction with their access to care and overall management of their pain. They described variable and often difficult access, limited continuity of care, they were often not taken seriously by health care providers, they received scant information about chronic pain and its prognosis and there were often noteworthy variations in the treatment they received. We agree that these criticisms are commonplace and a frequent gripe directed at health care practitioners about the “system.”1 Moreover, the problems associated with care delivery are confounded by a number of patient/consumer factors, such as lifestyle habits, nutrition, body weight, depression, health literacy, geographical isolation and poor socioeconomic conditions, making the management of persistent pain even more complicated.2 There is no doubt that, in the future, matching the care service and treatment with the individual patient will become an essential component of care services, as has been implied in published research.3–6



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