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UW Health: Calls for pain treatment increased during pandemic

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Doctors at the UW Health Pain Management Clinic say calls for pain treatment increased 50 to 70 percent in the early months of the coronavirus pandemic.

During that time, the health system had to make major changes to in-person care, which meant some patients with chronic pain had to battle that pain away from the clinic.

But now, the patient is up and running again. Doctors are encouraging people experiencing chronic pain to make an appointment.

"Pain is a symptom of something going on. It is a warning sign that warns the body that something is going on, go check for it," said Dr. Alaa Abd-Elsayed, medical director of the UW Health Pain Management Clinic and assistant professor of anesthesiology at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health.

"The more you let pain go, the more complex it gets, the more it becomes what we call central pain and then becomes much harder to treat," Dr. bd-Elsayed said.

“We are open and implore our patients to come in and be treated,” he said. “Waiting will only prolong the suffering and accelerate other conditions that may be causing some of this pain.”

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