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Chronic pain

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Abstract

The management of chronic pain is an emerging discipline in veterinary medicine. It requires an understanding of chronic pain that is beyond that of ‘acute pain that has lasted a long time’. This chapter will address some of the intellectual dilemmas of chronic pain and then set out a practical approach to assessing and treating chronic pain. This will include sections of Pain and suffering; Definition of chronic pain; Neurophysiology; Assessment of pain and suffering; A pragmatic approach to the treatment of chronic pain in dogs and cats; Osteoarthritis; and Chronic pain clinics.

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Figures

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3.1 Chronic pain causes the same physiological changes in the body as does chronic stress.
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3.4 Pain and suffering.
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3.5 The components of this dog’s pain are Achilles tendon rupture and surgical complications. The component of the pain is the way the dog feels about this sensation, in this case obvious from his expression. The component is the predictable lifting of the injured leg whenever it feels painful.
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3.6 Triangulation.
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3.9 An approach to the treatment of chronic pain.
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3.12 Oral transmucosal administration of buprenorphine.
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3.13 A relaxed patient undergoing transcutaneous spinal electroanalgesia.

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