Pain is an important physiological mechanism that tells the body that there is a problem in the functioning of organs or systems. From the point of view of evolution pain is a useful sense that can help to address its causes. The loss of the body's ability to feel pain (for example, damage to the nerves due to diabetes) is a dangerous condition, because a person can get a burn, frostbite or wound and not notice it. In such a case, the person's life could be in danger.
However, in some cases, pain becomes unbearable (phantom pain after amputation), which hinders normal life. Chronic pain accompanying certain diseases can exhaust the patient, and lead to resource depletion of the nervous system. In some situations a vicious cycle develops where the pain impulses cause spasm of the muscles, which leads to disruption of blood supply and increased pain manifestations.
For medical rehabilitation pain is the "enemy", which prevents the restoration of active movements and saps the patient's energy. This is why the treatment of pain receives much attention in rehabilitation programs of patients with injuries and lesions of the nervous system.
Reuth is the National Centre for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Complex Pain (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, CRPS). Treatment of this condition is interdisciplinary and touches all of syndrome manifestations – the pain itself, as well as various disorders caused by it: movement, sensory, autonomic, functional, and psychological.
Program for treatment of pain
The program involves the treatment of patients suffering from chronic pain and includes a number of methodologies which are used to build an individual rehabilitation program for each patient.
- Diagnosis. In the course of examination, it is necessary to accurately determine the source of the pain in order to address the cause and not simply drown out the pain with medication.
- The choice of medicinal treatment. Treatment of the pain area can be done using various drugs in the form of tablets or injections, delivering the drug directly into the damaged area or in the center of inflammation. Analgesic (pain-killing) medications are chosen considering the intensity and type of pain.
- Physical methods of pain treatment. Such methods include ultrasound, exposure to radio waves, electrotherapy and other means of pain treatment.
- Psychological assistance. With certain types of chronic pain patients also need psychological rehabilitation to cope with the difficult period. Treatment is always individual. If necessary, certain types of antidepressants are prescribed.
- Complementary (alternative) medicine – acupuncture, massage, etc.
When medically indicated, in parallel with treatment of pain, rehabilitation activities are conducted which ultimately should lead to the elimination of the causes of the pain. The goal of the pain clinic staff is to offer patients relief from pain and support them in the daily struggle with their limitations, as well as to teach them to optimally function despite the pain.
Comprehensive pain treatment facilitates achieving the greatest success in treating patients, thereby sparing them from pain or significantly reducing its intensity, which greatly improves their quality of life.