Category : Pain

Medication Opioids Pain

5 Side Effects of Opioids

Opioids are a type of pain medication that has been used for thousands of years to treat different types of pain. They are made from the poppy that is used to make opium and heroin, which make them highly addictive. Opioids can be used to treat pain involving skin, muscles and bones following an injury or surgery.

Some of the most common side effects of opioids include:

  1. Nausea
  2. Constipation
  3. Itching
  4. Drowsiness
  5. Decrease in breathing
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Hand Hand Surgery Opioids Pain Surgery

Ask a Doctor: What to Expect After Surgery

Dr. Ekkehard Bonatz answers your questions about what to expect after you’ve had hand surgery.

Q: I’ve been told I will have a cast, splint, or brace. What does that mean?

A: Many surgeries require a short time of protection to allow your body to start its recovery from your procedure.  Leaving surgery, your hand, wrist, or forearm may be wrapped with a bulky dressing. Surgeons will frequently include a splint as a part of the dressing. It is a rigid part of the dressing that is intended to protect the surgical repair and add to comfort.  A splint typically covers only part of the surgical area, leaving some room for swelling.  Depending on what is needed for your particular surgery, your surgeon may recommend that you return to the office after a few days for a dressing change or a change to a full cast

A cast is applied by wrapping fiberglass tape or plaster around your hand, wrist, or arm. The cast hardens and forms a rigid hollow tube around your extremity. It holds the surgical area still during the healing process. It may need to be changed over time to account for swelling, wound care, suture removal, or to take x-rays.  Some surgeries require a brace during the healing process. 

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Hand Hand Surgery Opioids Pain

6 Ways to Reduce Pain Without Opioids

After surgery, you may be feeling pain. While your doctor may have prescribed medication to lessen the pain, there are many other things you can do to make yourself more comfortable post-surgery. Here are six ways to reduce pain without opioids:

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Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Hand Pain Nerves Pain

8 Signs of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) – formerly known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) – is a pain condition that can be present for a long period of time. Those with this condition have a dysfunction in their central or peripheral nervous systems, causing the system to send frequent or constant pain signals to the brain, which results in the nervous system becoming overactive.

Here are 8 signs that you may have CRPS:

  1. “Burning” pain
  2. Sensitive skin
  3. Changes in skin temperature (warmer or cooler compared to other parts of the body)
  4. Changes in skin color (often blotchy, purple, pale or red)
  5. Changes in skin texture (shiny and thin, and sometimes excessively sweaty)
  6. Changes in nail and hair growth patterns
  7. Swelling and stiffness in affected joints
  8. Decreased ability to move the affected body part
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Hand Musician Pain

Advice from a Certified Hand Therapist for Musicians

©furtseff/fotolia

“…the instrument becomes an extension of the body, for example, the bow of the violinist or the drumsticks of the drummer.” – Schlinger, 2006.

Many musicians say they “merge” with their instrument when they are playing – that they lose themselves and do not know where they stop and the instrument begins. This process leads to beautiful music; however, it can lead to less body awareness, pain and overuse injuries related to playing their instrument.

Statistics estimate more than 39,000 people are formally employed as musicians in the United States. This does not include the large numbers of children and teenagers just starting out, or devoted amateur and professional musicians playing night and weekend shows. Among this large number of musicians, studies have shown that the percentage who report having play-related pain may actually be higher than in other professions. In some groups, more than 90% of musicians surveyed reported having some type of pain.

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Hand Hand Surgery Opioids Pain

How Do Former Opioid Addicts Safely Get Pain Relief After Surgery?

from NPR

Nearly 1.5 million Americans were treated for addiction to prescription opioids or heroin in 2015, according to federal estimates, and when those people get seriously hurt or need surgery, it’s often not clear, even to many doctors, how to safely manage their pain. For some former addicts, what begins as pain relief ends in tragedy.

Max Baker is one such case. He started using prescription pain pills as a teenager in New England and quickly moved on to heroin. His father, Dr. James Baker, is a physician in the Worcester, Mass., area, and says he saw signs that his son was high on opioids — in Max’s pupils and skin tone. He begged Max to stop.

“He would have slurred speech, and be nodding off at the dinner table, and we’d go to a concert together and he would disappear and come back acting differently,” James Baker says.

It was a long, painful slog, but Max eventually sought help. When he was 22, he was prescribed an opioid called suboxone, a standard relapse prevention drug that helps wean people off opioids. After a year, he’d worked his way off that medication, too.

Read the full story.

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Hand Hand Therapy Mirror Therapy Pain

Advice from a Certified Hand Therapist: Mirror Therapy for Chronic Pain

Chronic pain that does not respond to conventional treatment can be frustrating for both the person with the pain and the team of people trying to help alleviate the pain. You may have heard of mirror therapy, but are unsure of what it is or who can benefit. To answer these questions, I consulted Susan Stralka, PT, DPT, MS. Susan has many years of experience treating patients with chronic pain and has lectured around the world on this topic.

What is mirror therapy?

Mirror therapy is a rehabilitation technique that uses the mirror image of a non-painful limb to retrain the brain about its perception of a painful limb. The non-painful limb (such as a hand or foot) is placed in front of a mirror and the painful limb is placed behind the mirror out of sight.

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Hand Medication Opioids Pain

Random Fact: Opioids

Did you know? Opioids are a type of pain medication made from the poppy that is used to make opium and heroin. Learn more about how to use opioids safely.

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