Study offers new insights into how calcium affects pain | Medical marijuana requires more research, experts say | U.K. study finds insomnia may be linked to pain
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September 3, 2014
News for the pain professional

Pain Research News
Study offers new insights into how calcium affects pain
Duke University researchers reported that studying a molecule linked to pain in worms led to new information on calcium's role in pain behavior. The study in the journal Nature Communications suggests the findings could help develop new ways to treat pain in humans. Science World Report (9/2)
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Medical marijuana requires more research, experts say
Better scientific evidence is needed to support the use of medical marijuana to treat pain and other health problems, even as 23 U.S. states now allow medicinal use, experts told the 2014 European League Against Rheumatism Congress. McGill University pain specialist Mary-Ann Fitzcharles said more studies are especially needed on using marijuana to treat patients with rheumatic conditions and cautioned physicians to "project a message of extreme caution" regarding its use. Pain Medicine News (9/2014)
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Treatment News
Cancer patients may fear taking pain medication
Medical experts said patients with advanced cancer may not take sufficient pain medication due to fears of addiction or abuse. Pain specialist Judith Paice at Northwestern University said that some patients have trouble telling physicians about the severity of their pain, but detailed descriptions are needed to provide adequate treatment. Yahoo/Reuters (8/29)
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Ohio hospice tests genetics-based pain management program
Ohio hospice provider ViaQuest is expanding its pharmacogenetics pain management program. The testing can show how a person's body metabolizes a drug, to see how well a pain drug will work in each patient. The hospice hopes to use its tracking data to push for reimbursement for using the technology. (9/2)
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Policy & Trends
Military seeks more aggressive pain-management approach
The military's Defense & Veterans Center for Integrative Pain Management wants to better coordinate and more aggressively manage troops in pain, beginning at the time of injury, said director Col. Trip Buckenmaier. He wants to implement a new pain-rating tool and said how pain is managed determines long-term outcomes and whether pain becomes a chronic condition. (8/29)
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Alternative therapies reduce drug dependence at VA clinic
A pain clinic at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center in Charleston, S.C., focuses on the use of alternative therapies -- including acupuncture, meditation and aromatherapy -- instead of opioids to address pain. In five years, 400 veterans have been able to stop taking pain pills, clinic Director Dr. Robert Friedman said. The Post and Courier (Charleston, S.C.) (free registration) (9/1)
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APS News
Now open: Clinical Centers of Excellence Award Program
The American Pain Society's Clinical Centers of Excellence (CCOE) award program is currently accepting applications. The annual award program is intended to honor programs or services that exemplify the provision of outstanding clinical care regardless of size. Any U.S.-based, multidisciplinary clinical program that provides direct patient care and is primarily focused on the treatment of pain that believe they meet the award criteria are encouraged to apply. Selection of awardees will be based on judgment of the quality of services provided and not size of program. This distinction is one of APS's highest honors in the area of clinical treatment. The deadline to submit an application is Friday, Nov. 21. Learn more.
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Sharon S. Keller Research Grant Program opens Monday
The Sharon S. Keller Chronic Pain Research Grants Program was established to fund research projects that have a high likelihood of leading to new treatments, increased access to/and or expansion of treatment options for people with chronic pain. The grant program will award up to three grants in the amount of $35,000 to those pain research proposals that demonstrate the greatest merit and potential for success. Interested applicants should submit a required one-page letter of intent (LOI) briefly describing the objective, aims, methods and relevance of their proposed. Only approved LOIs will be invited to submit a full application. The LOI submission process is open from Monday, Sept. 8, to Tuesday, Sept. 30. Learn more.
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The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook."
-- William James,
American philosopher and psychologist
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