What is Chronic Pain?

Pain management KnoxvilleWhen somebody feels pain, it is more often than not a symptom of an illness or injury. The onset of this pain is usually sudden, and it serves as a way to draw attention to a problem, thus urging the patient to address the situation. The solution can be as simple as reminding you to take your hand away from a hot stove, or more complex like letting you know to seek medical attention. This sudden onset pain is known as acute pain, and it is usually reasonably short lived:  once the patient addresses the problem, the pain subsides.

However, some people suffer from longer lasting pain that requires the help of pain specialists. This is chronic pain, and it can persist for periods of 6 months or more. Chronic pain usually comes from a long-term illness or injury that has caused damage to the body. Statistics fluctuate, but estimates suggest between 11 and 40 percent of Americans are living with chronic pain.

Chronic pain can affect all areas of the patient’s life. It interferes with their ability to work, sleep, and enjoy recreational activities. It can even cause issues with families and other relationships. That is why it is so important for people living with chronic pain to have pain management in place to try and improve their quality of life. Pain specialists are experts in dealing with chronic pain.

Common Sources of Chronic Pain

Chronic pain can be a result of a wide range of conditions and injuries. Just some of the sources that pain specialists encounter when working with patients living with chronic pain include:

  • Injuries
  • Headaches (e.g., Migraine, Cluster Headaches)
  • Back Pain
  • Arthritis
  • Tendinitis
  • Overuse Injuries (e.g., Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Repetitive Strain)
  • Autoimmune Disorders (e.g., Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis)

It is important to remember that although pain is the biggest problem for Chronic Pain sufferers, there are also some other symptoms that contribute to making the condition even more unbearable. These include insomnia, irritability, mood swings, anxiety, fatigue, and depression. Chronic pain has also been known to trigger muscle spasms leading to soreness and stiffness.

Treating Chronic Pain

Pain specialists use a wide variety of pain management techniques. Oral medications such as opioids, acetaminophen, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are a popular choice, but topical medications like ointments, creams, and patches are also common. There are also some techniques pain specialists may use to help relieve pain that don’t involve drugs. These include alternative therapies such as acupuncture or procedures to alleviate the pain.

A recent study has also revealed that behavioral strategies can be beneficial for pain management when it comes to chronic pain. A growing number of pain specialists are advocating the use of CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) and MBCT (mindfulness based cognitive therapy) as ways to help alleviate chronic pain.

Associated Pain Specialists (APS) has two Pain Management Clinics (one in Johnson City, TN and one in Knoxville, TN). Both locations can provide pain management options for patients including those living with chronic pain conditions. APS also operate the Smoky Mountain Ambulatory Surgery Center with its own on-site interventional pain specialist, orthopedic spine surgeon, and fellowship trained anesthesiologist.


Phone: (865) 673-5000

Please reference APS’s content disclaimer (located in this channel’s profile description) in regard to this shared content.


Author: Associated Pain Specialists

Associated Pain Specialists Part of the Solution Not the Problem for Pain Management Treating patients with interventional techniques and holistic practices APS understands a life of pain is not a quality of life. Our continual goal is to understand our patients and their needs. By doing so, we exceed the highest standards in pain management by providing optimal, thorough, and compassionate medical care to our patients. We accomplish this through the incorporation and utilization of the multidisciplinary approach to the treatment of pain. Smoky Mountain Ambulatory Surgery Center Interventional Pain Specialist with Orthopedic Spine Surgeon and Anesthesiologist Fellowship Trained. Certified Pain Management Facility We offer a comprehensive solution for your pain including integrative medicine approaches with compounding pain creams and DME bracing to alleviate stress on pain areas. Patient Portal We make it easy for patients to get the care they need. Please visit www.myhealthrecord.com to login and access your medical records anytime, anywhere, talk privately to your care team, and receive the best care possible. TYPES OF PROCEDURES Procedures are performed in the office or ambulatory surgery setting at APS by a board certified Orthopedic Surgeon or Pain Specialist. Knoxville Location Procedures: Intradiscal Injections Epidural Steroid Injections Caudal Epidural Steroid Injections Interlaminar Epidural Steroid Injections Transforaminal Epidural Steroid Injections Medial Branch Blocks Radiofrequency Ablation Sacroiliac (SI) Joint Injections Cervical Medial Branch Lumbar Facet Joint Injections Thoracic Medial Branch Spinal Cord Stim Trials Trigger Point Injections Joint Injections SI Joint, Knee, Hip, Shoulder Johnson City Location Procedures: Caudal Epidural Steroid Injections Interlaminar Epidural Steroid Injections Transforaminal Epidural Steroid Injections Medial Branch Blocks Radiofrequency Ablation Cervical Facet Joint Injections Lumbar Facet Joint Injections Thoracic Facet Joint Injections Spinal Cord Stimulator Trials Trigger Point Injections Joint Injections SI Joint, Knee, Hip, Shoulder Sacroiliac Joint Injections TYPES OF PAIN TREATED Headache Cluster Headache Migraine Occipital Neuralgia Post-Trauma Headache Rebound Headache Refractory Headache Tension Headache Neuropathic Pain Carpel Tunnel Syndrome CRPS/RSD/Causalgia Diabetic Neuropathy HIV Neuropathy Multiple Sclerosis Phantom Limb Syndrome Postherpetic Neuralgia Trigeminal Neuralgia Rheumatologic and Myofascial Pain Fibromyalgia Inflammatory Arthritis Lupus and Other Autoimmune Disorders Lyme and other Infectious Disease Osteoarthritis Plantar Fascitis If you do not see the type pf pain you have on this list, don't worry! Please feel free to call and make an appointment for a confidential evaluation at the clinic. (865) 673-5000 referrals@APSpaincenters.com Knoxville Location 1346 Papermill Pointe Way Knoxville, TN 37909 (865) 673-5000 knox@APSpaincenters.com Johnson City Location 818 Sunset Drive Suite 102 Johnson City, TN 37604 (865) 673-5000 johnsoncity@APSpaincenters.com Disclaimer: This site contains links that do not necessarily represent the medical laws of the State of Tennessee or other state laws. This site may also contain "shared content" outside of this APS channel. This 'shared content' does not provide medical advice, does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of APS, nor is it endorsed by APS, and is strictly for informational purposes only.

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