"Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of overcoming it."Helen Keller
Accurate assessment of pain in animals is a subjective and challenging endeavor for veterinary professional.
Many various factors are involved, including species, breed, age, origin of pain and type of pain.
Types of pain would include nociceptive(peripheral tissue injury ), neuropathic ( nerve damage or spinal cord damage ), visceral (thoracic or abdominal )or somatic ( bones, joints, muscles, skin).
Pain can be further broken down between a cute, sudden stimulus like surgery or trauma, and chronic, persistent beyond the time of normal healing.
Pain induced stress is one of the negative consequences of pain, causing a cascade of symptoms via the endocrine system. Increased cortisol, catecholamines, fight or flight hormones, anti-inflammatory mediations cause tachycardia, vasoconstriction, decreased gastrointestinal motility, delay healing and sleep deprivation.
Inadequate pain management can amplify pain perception and prolong a painful state.
Scoring tools like noting changes in behaviors, physiologic parameters, and noting response to treatment, assessment and reassessment, are vital to managing pain in our patients.
A multimodal approach to treating our patient's pain is most effective, using different drugs with varied actions and properties to attack and subdue pain on all available fronts.
With many new and improved protocols at our disposal, acupuncture, massage, physical therapy, chondroprotectants, supplements and nutraceuticals are among the weapons in our arsenal.
Drugs we can use to comfort or painful patients would include corticosteroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, which have an anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, pseudo-opioids and opioids, which are analgesics, local and topical anesthetics which block pain recognition, antidepressants and anxiolytics, used in adjunctive analgesia.
Pain management is a huge and vital undertaking, requiring the whole dictionary team to use all of their knowledge, observational skills and compassion.
This surcease of pain requires a constant assault on the cause and symptomatology of pain.