Pain and Health Care
Pain is a critical problem in health care. It affects millions of individuals, costs billions of dollars, and is a major cause of suffering. We have very little understanding of the changes that occur in the brain when an individual is in pain. For this reason many pain conditions, particularly those that are chronic, are very difficult to treat and many patients suffer from lifelong symptoms. A patient suffering from chronic pain will experience major alterations in the nervous system, which can lead to changes in personality, the development of depression, lack of motivation, and addiction. All of these alterations severely impact and reduce the quality of patients’ lives.
The Center for Pain and the Brain’s mission is to discover more about the neurological, psychological and autonomic processes behind both acute and chronic pain conditions. Our lab aims to find new pain pathways in the brain and central nervous system. We also work to strengthen our understanding of the interaction between pain and drugs, specifically analgesics. Our large array of studies focus on migraine headaches, complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), post-concussive headaches, ankle sprains and more. Through our work, we hope to discover new ways to evaluate pain and enhance the development of pain therapeutics, thus bettering pain treatment for clinicians, families and patients.