There was an ad running recently that had the punch line of, “it must be true, I read it on the internet.”
The truth is that the internet is a place that many chronic pain patients use to find and communicate information, and talk with other pain patients through social media.
But seldom do patients go online to actually address their pain symptoms.
That may be changing in the coming months.
People suffering in chronic pain may be able to reduce their symptoms and the frequency of doctor visits by doing one simple thing: Use online pain management tools.
That’s what researchers out of Macquarie University in New South Wales, Australia are saying.
They recruited 490 people who suffer in chronic pain. They split the group up into one of three groups, where one group had regular contact with their doctors, another group had optional contact with their doctors, and a third group with no contact with their doctors.
What the researchers found was interesting. Regardless of how much contact participants had with their doctors, they all experienced significant reductions in disability, anxiety and average pain levels.
After eight weeks in the study, patients had average reductions of at least 18% in disability, 32% for anxiety, 36% for depression and 12% in their pain levels. The study group maintained these improvements even after three months.
“While face-to-face pain management programs are important, many adults with chronic pain can benefit from programs delivered via the internet, and many of them do not need a lot of contact with a clinician in order to benefit,” lead study author Blake Dear, told Fox News.
National Pain Report wants to know if you use online pain management tools, and if you believe they help you save time, money and most importantly help reduce pain symptoms.