Trauma Victims have
Three Alternative Therapies
for Pain Management

Patients who suffer from shock trauma have benefitted from the following alternative therapies:

  • Reiki
  • Music Therapy
  • Acupuncture the researchers at University of Maryland Medical Center. Their Shock Trauma Center, known for state-of-the-art medicine and high-tech advances in patient care, has teamed up with the Center for Integrative Medicine with this result...

...some ancient, low-tech options can help patients manage their pain. Speaking of pain management, Rick Dutton, UMMC's chief anesthesiologist explains,

"Pain management in trauma patients can be challenging because many of the medications have side effects, such as nausea and vomiting, and the medicines do not always provide adequate pain relief."

Dr. Dutton goes on to explain that "emotions can affect how patients perceive pain. These patients, in particular, often feel additional stress and loss of control because their injuries come unexpectedly."

These complementary therapies are offered to give patients more options for relaxation and stress relief. The hope: pain control and healing.

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Specially trained musicians play music for the injured. Reiki treatment promotes blood flow and relaxation. Acupuncture has effectively reduced traumatic pain.

Acupuncture for Pain?

According to Lixing Lao, M.D, Ph.D., the impact of acupuncture on chemicals in the blood that are markers for pain will also be investigated.

"Shock Center patients who have received acupuncture as part of their pain management have reported significant drops in their pain scores; now we want to see if we can quantify the percentage of that change."

For the actual protocol of this study, you may want to read the text of the article from University of Maryland.

Another Therapy: Reiki

Initial findings for the benefits of this Energy Medicine known as Reiki are that it helps patients to relax, says Donna Audia, R.N., certified Reiki master as well as nurse on the Center's pain management team.

"By using Reiki with these patients, we are not only helping them to relax, we're also making them active participants in their own healing, and that can be very empowering....We find that Reiki promotes a feeling of calmness and well-being. Patients who have received this therapy tell us that they feel more relaxed and that their pain sometimes decreases. In some patients, heart and breathing rates actually slow down."

Reiki is the most requested follow-up treatment so far. In fact, many family members ask to be part of the Reiki session. Although Reiki's been used to treat people with cancer and other illnesses, its use for those with injuries of this type widens its application.

And a Third Alternative: Music Therapy

With a flow of over 7,500 injured patients each year, the Center in downtown Baltimore, Maryland, has a steady stream of willing people. Specially trained musicians play on request as a music therapy those recently injured.

The sooner the better, researchers are discovering.

Dr. R. Adams Cowley, for whom the Center is named, pioneered the concept of the "golden hour," the idea that those who receive specialized treatment within the first hour after a traumatic injury are more likely to have better outcomes.

...I was very glad to see this major U.S. academic health center conducting research--as well as offering care to patients--on complementary therapies! -The Health Hound

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