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The Experience of Pain (Recorded Webinar)

presented by Susan Stralka

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Susan W. Stralka, receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.


 Non-Financial: Susan W. Stralka has no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

MedBridge is committed to accessibility for all of our subscribers. If you are in need of a disability-related accommodation, please contact [email protected]. We will process requests for reasonable accommodation and will provide reasonable accommodations where appropriate, in a prompt and efficient manner.

Accreditation Check:
This course is a recording of a previously hosted live webinar event. Polling and question submission features are not available for this recording. Format and structure may differ from standard MedBridge courses. Pain is a complex process integrating many areas in the brain. Understanding that pain is interpreted by the brain as a protective warning device incorporating past experience, emotions, and maladaptive neuroplasticity is an important part used to develop an effective treatment program. Chronic pain or persistent pain, (pain after the tissue has healed) continues to be an epidemic costly to the patient as well as healthcare system. Unfortunately, patients have not done well in therapy treatment because of the void in addressing the brain changes. Recent neuroscience evidence has revealed ways to address both the peripheral and central nervous system to achieve better outcomes. This course will provide ways to address the maladaptive brain changes occurring with persistent pain and ways that the patient can be in charge of their symptoms.

Meet Your Instructor

Susan Stralka, PT, DPT, MS

Susan W. Stralka, PT, DPT, MS, is a licensed physical therapist with many years of experience treating both musculoskeletal and neurovascular consequences of injury. She earned her bachelor's degree, master's degree, and Doctorate in Physical Therapy from The University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center in Memphis, Tennessee (UTHSC). She has a strong clinical background in…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. The Experience of Pain

This chapter will discuss the recent neuroscience evidence in identifying and treating the mechanisms causing pain. This chapter will enable healthcare providers to better understand the experience of pain, develop ways to classify pain Mechanisms, and review the differences between peripheral and central mechanisms.

2. Understanding Pain

To treat pain you must understand it. In this chapter, Dr. Stralka will discuss the biopsychosocial approach to understanding pain, and identify multiple brain areas involved with processing pain. This chapter also explores the brain areas where central sensitization occurs, including the spinal cord, brain stem, thalamus anterior cingulate, amygdala and prefrontal cortex.

3. Addressing the Brain Changes

This chapter examines how the brain changes as we experience pain. Topics include recent neuroscience evidence of maladaptive cortical representation, clinical signs and symptoms as they relate to brain changes, and the homunculus and the effect of smudging.

4. Explanation of Central Sensitization

Chapter four focuses on identification and explanation of central sensitization in difficult pain syndromes, including complex regional pain syndrome, neurogenic pain, neuropathic pain, and shoulder hand syndrome pain.

5. Comprehensive Therapy Treatment Program

This chapter applies concepts from the course to a comprehensive therapy treatment program. Participants will understand the importance of the patient/therapist relationship, developing the biopsychosocial approach throughout the entire treatment, and recognizing and treating the beliefs and misconceptions of the patient via neuroscience education.

6. Question and Answer

In the final chapter of this course, Susan Stralka answers questions submitted by participants during the live webinar event.

7. Learning Assessment

Test your knowledge with a brief multiple choice quiz.

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