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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on May 1, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • Shingles is a viral infection, medically referred to as acute herpes zoster, that usually develops a painful skin rash on parts of the body.
  • Pain from shingles may begin several days before the rash develops, which may make it difficult for physicians to diagnose.
  • The team at Southwest Spine and Pain Center discusses what treatments can help relieve shingles pain.

People who’ve had the chicken pox as children, also called varicella zoster virus, are susceptible to developing shingles. Why? Because shortly after chicken pox heals, the virus moves from the skin to an area near the spinal cord. The virus usually remains dormant for a number of years, but can become active...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 29, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • A herniated disc refers to the soft, inner component of the vertebrae pushing through its tough exterior, irritating nearby nerves.
  • Some herniated discs show little-to-no signs or symptoms in patients, while others are very apparent.
  • The pain management physicians at Southwest Spine and Pain Center discuss what are the causes and symptoms of a herniated disc.

Spinal discs are similar to a jelly, or crème-filled donut: they are made of a soft, rubbery center with a tough exterior. When a herniated disc occurs, also referred to as a “slipped” or “ruptured” disc, the softer inside is pushed through cracks of the tougher exterior, which can irritate nerves in the spine. Some patients may need...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 24, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • Individuals with chronic pain may be met with apprehension from certain physicians because the condition is difficult to diagnose and is often self-reported.
  • According to researchers from the University of Colorado, brain imaging may help physicians and pain management specialists validate treatment for chronic pain.
  • The team at Southwest Spine and Pain Center shares this new method for mapping out pain in the brain.

Diagnosing Chronic Pain

We’ve said it time and time again, but we’ll reiterate: chronic pain is a complex condition that can be difficult to...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 22, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • Failed back or neck surgery syndrome (FBSS / FNSS) describes pain that is felt after a corrective procedure.
  • It’s important patients keep in mind any surgical procedure can fail or provide inadequate relief for known or unknown reasons.
  • The pain management physicians at Southwest Spine and Pain Center may recommend a combination of interventional and conservative treatments for FBSS and FNSS.

Surgery to the neck or back may be performed to stabilize, remove or repair a damaged joint that’s causing pain. Although these procedures are designed to correct the area causing pain, and most do, it’s important patients keep in mind there are instances where a patient’s pain may not be...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 17, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • According to Consumer Reports, opioid is an epidemic in the U.S. with roughly 45 people a day (more than 16,600 people a year) dying from drug overdoses.
  • Opioid pain medicine can be habit-forming, even with regular doses, so it’s important patients take what’s prescribed by their physician.
  • Prescription pain medication can be safe when used properly. The physicians talk about the consequences of taking more pain medication than recommended.

Taking more pain medication than prescribed or recommended can be dangerous for a number of reasons. To start, opioid dependency is a very real, life-threatening occurrence that can lead to addiction, overdose or even death.


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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 15, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • Exercising with fibromyalgia pain can be difficult to do, but on the flipside, can be rewarding when done right.
  • There is a difference between pushing through minor discomfort and full-blown pain.
  • The pain management specialists at Southwest Spine and Pain Center share how to get through your spin class with chronic pain.

Exercising regularly is important for optimal health. Although this statement probably fits into the “easier said than done” category, implementing a regular work out plan into your daily routine could help alleviate some of your fibromyalgia pain. Studies have found regular aerobic exercise (i.e. running, biking, swimming, etc.) increases blood flow and circulation,...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 10, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • A spinal cord stimulator (SCS) is an implantable device that delivers electric pulses to specific nerve fibers that control pain.
  • SCS is not a cure for chronic pain, but can help manage pain symptoms.
  • Because SCS uses an implantable generator that produces low-level electric pulses, patients need to be cautious of certain lifestyle choices.

The leaders of Utah pain management at Southwest Spine and Pain Center offer spinal cord stimulation as a treatment option for those living in chronic pain. To learn more about this device and the procedure itself, please visit our treatments page. If you already have a...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 8, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:"

  • Living with chronic pain is tough, but it shouldn’t stop you from living a fulfilled life.
  • Chronic pain sufferers may have pain so severe it stops them from working altogether, affecting both their mental and emotional wellbeing.
  • Utah’s leading pain management group at Southwest Spine and Pain Center is sharing career ideas for chronic pain sufferers.

The phrase, “find a career you love and you’ll never work a day in your life” couldn’t be more true for the team at Southwest Spine and Pain Center. Each SWSP pain management physician takes great pride in working for the Utah pain community and thoroughly enjoys helping those in need.

Although we all have different tastes and enjoy...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 3, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • Pain can make patients feel isolated or misunderstood, making it harder to express thoughts and feelings.
  • The Southwest Spine and Pain Center physicians recognize pain management requires supplemental therapies to address the mental and emotion aspects of pain.
  • Below are creative outlet ideas for managing chronic pain symptoms.

Creative activities like dancing, painting, writing, and more can help keep a patient’s mind off their physical pain, while providing a vehicle to express emotional pain. Unfortunately, depression is a common side effect of chronic pain and can consume a person’s livelihood if not addressed immediately. Patients should consider complementary forms of “medicine” (i.e.,...

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Submitted by Rachel Cohen on April 1, 2015

30-Second Blog “Snapshot:”

  • There are different kinds of OTC pain relievers that address different pain problems.
  • OTC pain medication falls into two categories: acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Below are examples of what medications to take for what pains.

The pain management specialists at Southwest Spine and Pain Center provide extraordinary pain care and the absolute best in in-office interventional medicine. However, there are times where over-the-counter (OTC) pain medicines are needed to provide relief in-between appointments. If you’re experiencing pain and need treatment before your next appointment, check out some of the OTC pain relievers featured below.


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