September marks International Pain Awareness Month, which aims to raise awareness of the challenges faced by those living with chronic pain. The burden of living with long-term pain should be considered a serious health problem in its own right, and patients with chronic pain often suffer from significant stigma. This is often the result of not being fully able to communicate the subjective experience of pain. It is therefore vital to establish relevant and meaningful communication channels, including communication between patients and stakeholders, and tools to assist patients to convey the pain they are experiencing.

Living with pain

Chronic pain is a problem that is shared amongst multiple patient communities and individuals, irrespective of their social backgrounds or disease areas. Given the uncertain boundaries of this problem and the difficulty of identifying effective treatments, IAPO calls on healthcare stakeholders to listen to, and engage with patient populations affected by chronic pain.

Policy briefing 2017

Harnessing patient involvement in decision-making is vital to create patient-centric pain treatment and management strategies.  These strategies must build on three key actions.
  • Increasing the understanding of the issues faced by patients living with pain
  • Creating tools to help manage pain and lead more active, fuller lives
  • Sharing of experiences between patients, allowing essential emotional support to manage long-term pain

Read the policy briefing here

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