Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Special Outpatient Surgery Edition - Megatrends - January 2018

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

Issue link: http://outpatientsurgery.uberflip.com/i/926595

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Page 55 of 66

patients' pain without turning them into addicts. "It's a scary thing when we talk about post-op pain in the context of the epidemic," says Dr. Mariano. "It's alarming to think about how many patients who have persistent pain use opioids long term." Some of that long-term use can be attributed to patients who return to their primary doctors after a few uncomfortable weeks following sur- gery. "If they haven't had pain resolution and aren't off of opioids at that point, there's a good chance they'll remain on them," says Dr. Mariano. That's where transitional pain clinics come into play. "They call it transitional pain because it's not chronic yet and because patients might be on their way to recovery," says Dr. Mariano. "It's also not acute pain because the immediate post-op period has ended." By going to transitional clinics, patients get help in tapering off of opioids in the critical first weeks after surgery. The clinics might pro- vide techniques like peripheral neuromodulation, but they might also offer other services like psychological assessments. "We might find that intervening at the right time has better and stronger effects on long-term outcomes," says Dr. Mariano, who's currently developing a transitional clinic at his hospital. Closer than you think When it comes to longer-term pain management, anesthesia providers struggle to provide consistent relief. "We fall short," says Dr. Mariano. "It highlights the importance of matching analgesic techniques to how patients experience pain. There's a gap there, and it's made us look at other options." By focusing on more individualized patient pain treatment and incorporating new pain management techniques, the road to reducing and possibly eliminating post-op pain might be smoother and shorter than we think. OSM 5 6 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 8

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