Chronic Pain | Seniors | Tyler Texas

Seniors and Chronic Pain Overview

It is reported approximately 88% of senior citizens experience some form of chronic pain, or pain that lasts more than three months. Seniors are more prone to chronic pain because of joint and muscle wear and tear, a decrease in physical activity and the presence of other medical conditions. The pain specialists at Pain Recovery Center of Tyler, proudly serving the greater Tyler, Texas area, specialize in diagnosing and treating chronic pain in patients of all ages, including seniors. Our multimodal treatment approach is designed to treat the true cause of pain and return patients to a pain-free and healthy lifestyle.

Common Chronic Pain Types in Senior Citizens

Millions of senior citizens are affected by chronic pain at any given time. The most common types of chronic pain found in seniors include:

  • Arthritis/joint pain
  • Ongoing pain from injuries, such as a fracture or soft tissue tear
  • Repetitive strain/overuse injuries
  • Pain associated with a medical condition, such as a stroke
  • Peripheral neuropathy, such as with diabetes

The most effective way to control chronic pain is to stop the problem from occurring. The best way to achieve this is by maintaining a healthy lifestyle with regular exercise, a balanced diet and a regular sleep pattern. If an injury or health condition occurs, seniors are strongly encouraged to visit a healthcare professional so the problem can be diagnosed and treated as quickly as possible in order to eliminate the risk of a chronic condition developing.

How a Pain Specialist can Help Seniors Suffering from Chronic Pain

As seniors age it is sometimes impossible to turn back the hands of time and undo health conditions, past injuries and natural degeneration of the body. If chronic pain is present and affects a senior’s daily life, they are encouraged to visit a pain specialist. A pain specialist is trained and experienced at diagnosing and treating the true cause of pain with a multidisciplinary approach.

A pain specialist can help seniors suffering from chronic pain by utilizing a variety of treatment options. Common treatment options include:

  • Pain medications
  • Muscle relaxants
  • Anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs)
  • Steroid injections
  • Nerve blocks
  • Spinal decompression
  • Physical therapy
  • Massage therapy

If you are a child or caregiver of a senior citizen, it is important to watch for early warning signs of pain. A senior experiencing chronic pain will often begin rubbing the affected area, restrict movements and display a change in facial expressions. Tracking the location and level of pain on a daily basis is also extremely important. A pain journal is very beneficial in diagnosing the cause of chronic pain in seniors.

If you live in the Tyler, Texas area and are a senior citizen experiencing chronic pain, please contact the practice of Pain Recovery Center of Tyler. Our pain specialists are available to treat the cause of pain and return seniors to a happy and healthy lifestyle.  

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Myofascial Pain Syndrome | Chronic Pain | Tyler Texas

Myofascial Pain Syndrome & Chronic Pain

Myofascial pain syndrome (MFP) is a chronic pain condition marked by inflammation in the body’s soft tissues or muscles. This health condition often causes pain in unrelated parts of the body because of pressure on sensitive trigger points. The Tyler, Texas pain physicians at Pain Recovery Center of Tyler specialize in treating numerous chronic pain conditions, including myofascial pain syndrome.

Myofascial Pain Syndrome Overview

Myofascial pain syndrome is characterized by inflammation and pain that affects the fascia, the connective tissue that covers the body’s muscles. Many patients experience referred pain, a seemingly unrelated area of pain, because of pressure on sensitive points in the muscles. These sensitive areas are commonly referred to as trigger points.

The chronic pain condition typically begins after a muscle has been repetitively contracted over an extended period of time. This is often found in workers and recreational athletes that perform repetitive movements each day. Unlike acute muscle pain, the pain associated with myofascial pain syndrome becomes chronic. This health condition can also be caused by an injury to intervertebral discs, general fatigue, lack of activity (sling usage) and certain medical conditions such as a heart attack.

Symptoms of Myofascial Pain Syndrome

Symptoms of myofascial pain syndrome include a tender knot in a muscle (trigger point), deep, aching pain in a muscle, acute pain that worsens into chronic pain and difficulty sleeping because of the pain level. Many patients report increased pain with physical activity and stress.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Myofascial Pain Syndrome

A pain doctor will begin the diagnosis of myofascial pain syndrome by determining the body’s trigger points. When pressure is applied to a specific area of the body and causes pain, it is typically classified as a trigger point. There are four common types of trigger points found in patients affected by this chronic pain condition, including:

  • Active trigger point- an area of extreme tenderness that usually lies within the muscle and is associated with local or regional pain.
  • Latent trigger point- a dormant (inactive) area that has the potential to act like a trigger point.
  • Secondary trigger pointa highly irritable spot in a muscle that can become active due to a trigger point and muscular overload in another muscle.
  • Satellite myofascial point- a highly irritable spot in a muscle that becomes inactive because the muscle is in the region of another trigger point.

Many pain physicians begin treatment of myofascial pain syndrome with a physical therapy and rehabilitation program. Various physical therapy techniques are utilized to stretch and cool the trigger point. A combination of physical therapy, massage and trigger point injections may be prescribed in more severe cases.

For additional information on myofascial pain syndrome, a chronic pain condition, please contact the pain physicians at Pain Recovery Center of Tyler, proudly serving the greater Tyler, Texas area.