Musculoskeletal Pain

Musculoskeletal is the term used to refer to any pain affecting joints, bones, or muscles. When the pain persists for more than three months, then it is called Chronic Musculoskeletal pain. In severe cases, this can have a significant impact on a person’s quality of life.

What are the symptoms?

While the main symptom of Musculoskeletal Pain is the pain itself, there are a number of other physical and mental difficulties associated with the conditions. These can vary from patient to patient but often include:

  • Aching all over the body
  • Burning or twitching muscles
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia/sleep problems

Chronic Pain conditions, including chronic musculoskeletal pain can also have a significant impact on mental health. For example, many people with Chronic Pain also suffer from Depression and/or Anxiety.

Cause and treatment

Musculoskeletal Pain can start following an accident or injury; however, it often occurs gradually with no obvious cause. Evidence suggests that pain that lasts for longer than three months may be caused by changes in the nervous system rather than as a result of ongoing damage or injury.

Musculoskeletal Pain may also be linked to pre-existing conditions, particularly those related to joints, bones, or muscles, such as Arthritis, Paget’s disease, or Tendinitis. Habitual causes such as daily wear and tear, postural strain, repetitive use or spinal alignment problems, may also trigger Musculoskeletal Pain.

A combination of treatment options is usually recommended for the management of Musculoskeletal Pain. These can include:

  • Physiotherapy
  • Lifestyle changes and modifications to home and work environment
  • Psychological therapies
  • Painkillers – both over-the counter medications and stronger painkillers, such as codeine, tramadol, and morphine

While painkillers may be considered for pain management, they are often not considered a long-term solution due to potential unwanted side effects and high risks of abuse and addiction.

Medical Cannabis and Musculoskeletal Pain

Medical cannabis has long been considered a potential alternative to strong painkillers for the management of Chronic Pain conditions. There is growing evidence that the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) plays an important role in pain signalling. This could make cannabinoids a useful therapy for pain management.

Our specialist physicians are experienced in assessing individual cases and helping to determine whether medical cannabis could be an effective option.

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