Chronic pain is one of Canada’s most prevalent medical issues, with almost 20% of adults over 18 experiencing some degree of chronic pain and one-third of patients rating their pain as severe.
Unfortunately, although chronic pain is common, it’s often hard to diagnose and treat owing to its many different potential causes. Most chronic pain patients are therefore advised to undergo a complete physical and psychological assessment.
During a chronic pain assessment, patients are asked to describe their pain, either during a verbal interview or via a written questionnaire. Clinicians then use various medical tests (such as physical exams, neurological exams, and imaging tests) to identify the cause of the patient’s symptoms. Using the results of these tests, clinicians can develop an effective pain management plan consisting of physical therapy, lifestyle changes, coping strategies, and medication, as needed.