U.S News Article on Chronic Pain Features Dr. Matthew Crooks

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“ACCORDING TO A STUDY published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 20% of U.S. adults live with chronic pain.

Chronic pain is generally thought of as pain that lasts longer than three months. Chronic pain is different from the acute pain you might have immediately after an accident or injury. It can occur in many parts of the body, from arms and back to joints and nerves.

Chronic pain can have many different causes, including:

  • An accident.
  • A sports injury.
  • Cancer.
  • Depression.
  • Diseases such as arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and fibromyalgia.
  • Normal wear and tear over time with the aging process.
  • Obesity.
  • Poor posture, particularly from widespread use of cell phones and tablets. “We see stress on the posture and low back that worsens pain over time,” says pain management specialist Dr. Matthew Crooks of Pinnacle Pain and Spine in Scottsdale, Arizona.
  • Sitting a lot. “One of the biggest things for low back pain is that we sit too much,” says Dr. Leonel Hunt, an orthopedic spine specialist with Hunt Spine in Los Angeles.
  • Weakened muscles.

In addition to the challenge of living with the pain itself, chronic pain can be associated with depression and developing a dangerous dependency on pain-relieving drugs, such as opioids.

One important step to find relief from chronic pain is to identify its cause. “Once you know what’s causing your pain, the first step should be to treat the underlying cause,” says Dr. Febin Melepura, an interventional pain physician with Sports Injury & Pain Management Clinic of New York City.

Continue reading the article here.