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Why was the long-term pain guide produced?

This information is aimed at people who have long-term musculoskeletal pain that has become worrying, interfering or, in some cases, an all-consuming reality. It’s been written because we realise there are many people who find themselves in this situation. A large number of the calls the Arthritis Research UK information line receives are from people with arthritis who are at the end of their tether. Despite the improvements and advances in treatment and care, we’re only too aware that the needs of these people haven’t been properly addressed.

We produced this information following the results of our Active Listening campaign in 2010. We asked people with arthritis to tell us what was really important to them and the biggest problems they faced. We were told:

  • Long-term pain was the worst thing about arthritis.
  • Pain relief medication offered only very short-term relief and other treatments such as injections and rubs also didn’t work very well.
  • Pain clinics offered only minor benefits.
  • Steroid injections offered some a few months’ relief but pain often returned, and doctors didn’t want to offer more injections.
  • When pain relief failed, many tried complementary and alternative therapies such as massage, herbal remedies and magnetic bracelets.

We hope this information will help you manage your pain more effectively and let you know that you’re not alone.



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