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Healthline Connects

Pain Got You Down? Watch CBS Evening News with Katie Couric 6:30 PM February 19-21

Chronic pain is a serious public health problem plaguing millions of sufferers. The estimated costs to society are $100 billion in terms of lost productivity, medications, and other treatments. Pain affects 1 in 4 people and causes more disability than heart disease and cancer combined.

CBS Evening News addresses the pain issue in a 3 part series this week. Last night, Dr. Jon LaPook reported on some fascinating alternatives to medications. A TDCS (Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation) device is part of a clinical trial using a small amount of electrical current to interfere with the brain's perception of pain. The technique dates back 2,000 years ago when a Roman doctor used electric eels to relieve pain from headache and gout. Today TDCS may offer hope for people with fibromyalgia, spinal cord injury, migraine and other forms of chronic pain.

Tonight, Dr. LaPook will explain "Abuse Deterrent Opiates" - medications that don't work if crushed or taken improperly. Sounds great to me because I am overdosing on stories of unscrupulous doctors and pharmacists doing harm to people with chronic pain and other problems.

Tomorrow night on CBS Evening News, look for CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta to talk about video imaging that is being used to measure pain in little ones who can't tell us how they feel - babies. Facial recognition technology is part of another clinical trial to measure pain in infants and Dr. Gupta tells us all about it.

Understanding pain and new ways to cope with it is good news - Watch CBS News to learn more.
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