An overview of treatment approaches for chronic pain management

Rheumatol Int. 2017 Jan;37(1):29-42. doi: 10.1007/s00296-016-3481-8. Epub 2016 Apr 23.


Pain which persists after healing is expected to have taken place, or which exists in the absence of tissue damage, is termed chronic pain. By definition chronic pain cannot be treated and cured in the conventional biomedical sense; rather, the patient who is suffering from the pain must be given the tools with which their long-term pain can be managed to an acceptable level. This article will provide an overview of treatment approaches available for the management of persistent non-malignant pain. As well as attempting to provide relief from the physical aspects of pain through the judicious use of analgesics, interventions, stimulations, and irritations, it is important to pay equal attention to the psychosocial complaints which almost always accompany long-term pain. The pain clinic offers a biopsychosocial approach to treatment with the multidisciplinary pain management programme; encouraging patients to take control of their pain problem and lead a fulfilling life in spite of the pain.

Keywords: Biopsychosocial; Chronic pain; Pain management; Psychology.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics / therapeutic use*
  • Chronic Pain / drug therapy
  • Chronic Pain / psychology
  • Chronic Pain / therapy*
  • Electric Stimulation Therapy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Pain Management / methods*
  • Physical Therapy Modalities*


  • Analgesics