New Multidisciplinary Pain Program Announced at NIH

By Pamela Katz Ressler, MS, RN, HN-BC, adjunct faculty, Pain Research, Educationand Policy Program, Tufts University School of Medicine

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently announced a new multidisciplinary pain program that will be focused on the role of the brain in perceiving, modifying, and managing pain.  The program, lead by internationally recognized pain researcher and neuroscientist, Catherine Bushnell, PhD,  will be based in the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a part of the National Institutes of Health.

“Dr. Bushnell’s work has profoundly changed the ways in which we understand and study this very important problem,” said NCCAM Director Josephine P. Briggs, M.D. “Under her leadership, this program will continue to work toward the development of better ways to safely and more effectively treat chronic pain, and advance research on the intersection and integration of pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches.”

The NIH announcement of the pain program comes at a critical time in the growing burden of chronic pain in our society.  The Institute of Medicine reports that more than 100 million people suffer from chronic pain conditions and nearly $635 billion is spent annually for treatment and lost productivity.

Research projects for the new program will include investigating  how chronic pain produces changes in the brain that may modify how the brain reacts to pain medications, such as opioids; as well as exploring factors such as emotion, environment and genetics in pain perception.

The Tufts Pain Research, Education and Policy program faculty and students will look forward to future collaboration with this innovative new program.

Read the July NCCAM Clinical Digest on Chronic Pain and Complementary Health Practices

Add comment July 17th, 2012

Integrative Medicine Research Lecture Series

by Pamela Katz Ressler, RN, BSN, HN-BC, MS-PREP student, PREP-AIRED blog moderator
The NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine Center’s Integrative Medicine Research Lecture Series provides overviews of the current state of research and practice involving complementary and alternative medicine practices and approaches, and explores perspectives on the emerging discipline of integrative medicine. The upcoming lecture on August 9, 2010 may be of specific interest for those interested in learning more about clinical trials on acupuncture in Germany and pain management.
Lectures are open to the public at the NIH Clinical Research Center in Bethesda, Maryland (10:00 AM EDT) or now by free videocast at videocast.nih.gov
Upcoming LectureDate: August 9, 2010
Speaker: Claudia Witt, M.D., Professor for Complementary Medicine and Vice Director at the Institute for Social Medicine, Epidemiology and Health Economics Charite University Medical Center in Berlin, Germany
Topic: The acupuncture trials from Germany: What do they tell us about efficacy, effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and safety?
Location: NIH Campus, Building 31, 6C, Room 6

Add comment August 4th, 2010

Low Back Pain and Complementary & Alternative Medicine

by Pamela Katz Ressler, RN, BSN, HN-BC, MS-PREP student and PREP-AIRED blog moderator
The current issue of the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine’s (NCCAM) newsletter focuses on low-back pain: research and care. Since 4 out of 5 individuals will experience low-back pain in their lives, most healthcare practitioners will be asked to treat this condition at some point. Patients, as well as healthcare practitioners are often frustrated with treatment options for low-back pain. Understanding types of complementary strategies patients may be utilizing and may not be disclosing to their physicians is helpful in exploring the full context of low-back pain.

3 comments June 22nd, 2009


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