Stanford’s Back Pain Education Day will be held Sunday (September 13th). Over 400 persons are expected to attend in person (it’s sold out) but people from around the world interested in the issue of back pain are welcome to register online (here) and watch a live-stream of the event.
What should people expect to get out of the day?
“They’ll learn that we have much control over back pain than you think,” Dr. Sean Mackey told the National Pain Report. Dr. Mackey is Stanford’s Pain Medicine Division Chief and an internationally known expert in pain medicine and pain policy.
He said two main reasons are driving the idea of devoting a day to back.
“Obviously, one is that it is the most common chronic pain condition and it gives a chance to educate the community,” he said. “The other is that Stanford has several NIH Grants focusing on low back pain and it gives the audience both in person and online to see if they might like participate in some of the research going on.”
The day will focus on non-surgical and non procedural therapies. There will be quite a bit of emphasis on what a patient can do physically, mentally and generally should educate more back pain sufferers about things they can do to help themselves.
Dr. Mackey indicated that the robust turnout most likely means that Stanford will be doing more of these types of events in the coming months and years.
There has been increasing global and national attention to chronic pain in terms of its impacts and costs to society. In the United States alone, 100 million suffer from pain on a regular basis, and that is associated with costs of $635 billion dollars annually, including direct treatment costs and loss of productivity. The number one pain condition in the US and in the world is back pain.
Along with Dr. Mackey, Stanford Pain Psychologist Beth Darnall (Ph.D) will be co-hosting the day-long event, which begins at 10 a.m. (pacific time)
“What we also know is that the incidence and prevalence of chronic pain has been increasing, despite the fact that theoretically, we have better treatments. While we have a multitude of treatments available, globally, we haven’t been focusing on back pain as comprehensively as we really should,” Dr. Darnall said.
She is the author of Less Pain, Fewer Pills.