A chronic pain specialist is a highly-specialized doctor that people can go to when suffering from a range of different pain conditions. They can diagnose conditions, create treatment plans, and provide ongoing care for patients suffering from differing pain conditions.
These specialist doctors most often work with people experiencing pain symptoms for more than three months without seeing any reduction in pain levels or frequency of flare-ups due to their particular medical condition.
The most common types of chronic pain conditions that a pain specialist treats include:
- Arthritis pain
- Head pain and migraines
- Hip pain
- Knee pain
- Lower back pain
- Neck pain
- Nerve pain
Here we take a look at three of the most common chronic pain conditions that these specialists help to treat and manage over the long term. While there can be many types and causes of chronic pain, these are just three conditions that are very common among the UK population.
Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that can make you sensitive to pain all over the body. It isn’t located to just one area of the body, unlike an arthritic knee or chronic neck pain, with fibromyalgia, you can feel pain anywhere in your body and the effects of the pain can continue for much longer than it would with a person without the condition.
This condition isn’t just associated with physical pain. Fibromyalgia patients can also be sensitive to external things such as bright light, smoke and trigger foods or drinks that can set off a flare-up. A patient can also feel severe joint or muscular stiffness and muscle spasms, especially when getting out of bed in the morning or after sitting for a long time.
There are lots of other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia that a pain specialist can help to treat, including depression, anxiety, IBS and other gut-related conditions.
Osteoarthritis is a disease that affects the joints of the body and is the most common chronic pain condition that affects the joints. The main symptoms being pain and stiffness in the joints, which can cause pain when moving the joint or when doing physical activities.
With this condition, a patient can experience symptoms that come and go, and can often be affected by the weather or overdoing things, but with more severe cases the pain can be continuous and hard to live with.
General chronic pain symptoms
Chronic pain is a form of pain that occurs regularly and last for longer than 12 weeks. In some cases, it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of chronic pain. A chronic pain specialist will be able to run tests to rule out causes for the pain, such as osteoarthritis or fibromyalgia.
Sometimes chronic pain can develop many years after experiencing damage to the body through a sporting injury or an accident. A chronic pain specialist will be able to get to the root of the problem and be able to prescribe the best course of treatment most appropriate for your individual symptoms.