Medications

Estuarine waters hold promise in global pain-relief hunt

The worldwide search for an opioid alternative has made a leap forward—with a scientific discovery in an Australian fungus indicating effective pain relief and the potential for a safer less addictive drug, helping address ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

What patients expect influences pain management

An article in the current issue of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics explores the psychological aspects of pain management with particular reference to placebo infusions in back pain.

Health

Pain relief: When to use cold, when to use heat

(HealthDay)—Sore from a workout? You don't have to reach for pain relief medicine when ice or heat will help. But when should you go cold and when should you go warm?

Obstetrics & gynaecology

Endometriosis may be costing us much more than previously thought

Along with significant physical pain, endometriosis also hurts Australian women at the hip pocket, as well as having significant economic effects on society as a whole, a new study published today in PLOS ONE confirms.

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Pain is an unpleasant sensation often caused by intense or damaging stimuli such as stubbing a toe, burning a finger, putting alcohol on a cut, and bumping the "funny bone." The International Association for the Study of Pain has a definition that is widely used: "Pain is an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage".

Pain motivates the individual to withdraw from damaging situations, to protect a damaged body part while it heals, and to avoid similar experiences in the future. Most pain resolves promptly once the painful stimulus is removed and the body has healed, but sometimes pain persists despite removal of the stimulus and apparent healing of the body; and sometimes pain arises in the absence of any detectable stimulus, damage or disease.

Pain is the most common reason for physician consultation in the United States. It is a major symptom in many medical conditions, and can significantly interfere with a person's quality of life and general functioning. Psychological factors such as social support, hypnotic suggestion, excitement, or distraction can significantly modulate pain's intensity or unpleasantness.

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