Murray J. McAllister, PsyD
Murray J. McAllister, PsyD, is a pain psychologist and consults to health systems on improving pain. He is the editor and founder of the Institute for Chronic Pain (ICP). The ICP is an educational and public policy think tank. In its mission is to lead the field in making pain management more empirically supported, the ICP provides academic quality information on chronic pain that is approachable to patients and their families.
What is trigeminal neuralgia?
Trigeminal neuralgia (TN) is a condition that causes pain in the face and head. The pain is usually on one side of the face. It is related to the trigeminal nerve, which runs from the brain to the side of the face.
What is post-herpetic neuralgia?
Post-herpetic neuralgia is a nerve pain condition that can result from having shingles. Shingles is a painful rash of blisters on the skin. Shingles itself is caused by the chicken pox virus, which usually lies dormant once having had the chicken pox. The dormant virus can, however, flare up and cause shingles. The onset of shingles oftentimes occurs when someone is under stress. After a number of weeks, shingles usually goes away. Sometimes, however, the nerve pain associated with the shingles continues long after the healing of shingles blisters. This on-going nerve pain is called post-herpetic neuralgia.
What is neuralgia?
Neuralgia is a sharp type of pain that is associated with a problem in a nerve or nerves. It can range in intensity from mild to severe.
Neuralgia is most often associated with two unrelated conditions, trigeminal neuralgia and post-herpetic neuralgia.
What is nerve pain?
Nerve pain is a catchall phrase that is used to refer to a loosely associated group of pain disorders. It’s somewhat of a curious use of the phrase because, in a sense, all pain is nerve pain. Pain would not occur without nerves and the nervous system. No matter what the cause of pain, messages related to the cause are nerve impulses that travel along a system of nerves in the body, including the spinal cord and brain. So, again, in a sense, all pain is nerve pain. Nonetheless, the phrase ‘nerve pain’ is used to refer to a group of pain disorders that have some loosely associated features.
What is knee pain?
Knee pain is a common. Sometimes, it occurs acutely, such as when someone falls and tears a ligament. Other times, its onset is slow, due to strain on muscles or ligaments from repetitive motion. It can also come and go, such as when people have bursitis. Sometimes, however, it lasts longer and can become chronic. In most cases of chronic knee pain, it is due to osteoarthritis.
What is chronic hip pain?
Hip pain is common, particularly as people grow older. Sometimes, it occurs in an acute manner, such as when someone falls and has a hip fracture. Other times, it comes and goes, such as when people have bursitis. Sometimes, it lasts longer and can become chronic.
What is headache?
Headache is a condition marked by pain in the head. There are multiple kinds of headache: tension headache; migraine; cluster; trigeminal neuralgia; and rebound headache.
What is foot and leg pain?
Pain in the feet or legs is common. It can be caused by a number of different conditions. The most common conditions that cause pain in the feet and/or legs are the following:
What is fibromyalgia syndrome?
Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a common widespread pain condition. It occurs in about 3.4% of women and 0.5% of men.1 It has a typical set of symptoms:
What is facial pain?
Facial pain is a catchall term for any type of pain in the face. Facial pain can be either acute or chronic. Acute pain is pain that lasts less than six months. Acute pain usually resolves either on its own or with treatment. Examples are sinusitis, infections of the mouth or gums, or injuries to the face, such as a black eye or broken nose. Chronic facial pain is pain that either lasts continuously for over six months or occurs on a fluctuating basis over a period of six months or longer. Examples are trigeminal neuralgia and temporomandibular joint disorder.
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