Veterinary Acupuncture and Pain Management offers a bespoke service in managing chronic (long standing / on-going) pain in dogs and cats . Every animal is different in the way that it processes and perceives pain and how that pain ultimately impacts on its quality of life. The longer pain is left unchecked the worse it becomes with significant impact on an animals suffering.
Successful pain management involves a thorough understanding of pain pathways and the development of maladaptive pain and the long-term consequences of chronic pain. It is important that owners understand what is involved in treating chronic pain and do not underestimate the importance of their involvement in this process, nor the complexity of what we are trying to treat.
The aim to is to determine, not only the sources and types of pain that any individual is experiencing but, through a detailed review of the patients history, along with an in depth pain assessment (examination and questionnaire completed with the owner), also get a better understanding of the emotional component (suffering) and put together an individualised plan to manage that animals pain, reduce their suffering and ultimately afford them a better quality of life.
The assessment will not only look at the presenting signs but will also look for behavioural changes, assessment of gait (where possible), and examination which includes looking for signs of central sensitisation / pain wind-up and myofascial pain (muscle pain).
A plan will be formulated based on this assessment, any concerns that the owner may have and the most significant presenting problem.
It has long been known that the best way to manage chronic pain is using a multi-modal approach. That means use a variety of techniques to try to achieve optimal pain relief with minimal, if any, side effects.
A holistic approach to an individual animal means that all these areas will be looked at and discussed where appropriate and referral may be recommended to other therapy areas (e.g. physiotherapy, hydrotherapy).