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Preventing Chronic Pain: A Human Systems Approach (Coursera)

Chronic pain is at epidemic levels and has become the highest-cost condition in health care. This course uses both creative and experiential learning to better understand chronic pain conditions and how they can be prevented through self-management in our cognitive, behavioral, physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and environmental realms.

Chronic musculoskeletal pain (including head, neck, and back pain) is a significant cause of suffering, disability, and health care in the world. Care for chronic pain often involves surgery, multiple medications (including opioids), endless physical and chiropractic therapy, injections, implanted devices, and other passive treatments– making it the highest cost condition in health care. The burden upon individuals in terms of ongoing pain and suffering is incalculable.

Consider an alternative. By using a human systems approach, we can better understand how individual risk factors in the cognitive, behavioral, physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and environmental realms of our lives can interact to perpetuate chronic pain and, if improved, can prevent it.

During this course, you will: Identify the problems of our health care system in dealing with chronic pain. Review the diagnosis, mechanisms, and etiology of musculoskeletal pain conditions. Explore specific risk factors that can contribute to chronic pain. Learn how a human systems approach can be applied through evidence-based self-management strategies to prevent chronic pain. Experience active strategies designed to enhance the protective factors that can transform our own lives, and those of our patients, to one of health and wellness.

The goal of this course is to blend creative, experiential, and evidence-based teaching strategies to help participants understand chronic pain conditions and how a human systems approach can be applied to self-management strategies to reduce risk factors, enhance protective factors, and prevent chronic pain. There are four major objectives to the course;

1. Describe the prevalence, personal impact, and health care dilemma associated with chronic pain.

2. Recognize the clinical characteristics and underlying etiology of several common pain conditions and the peripheral, central, and genetic mechanisms of chronic pain

3. Based on the literature associated with risk and protective factors in the seven realms of our lives, learn specific strategies in each realm that can be employed daily to prevent chronic pain and enhance wellness.

4. Appreciate the value of a human systems approach to health care and how it can provide a basis for integrative, interdisciplinary, and individualized care to preventing pain and enhancing wellness.

Syllabus

WEEK 1

Introduction to the Course

In this first module, we will introduce you to the course and present an overview of the topics to be discussed and format of the course. We will also present information about receiving Continuing Education, joining the International Myopain Society, and supporting the Campaign for Preventing Chronic Pain

Graded: Module Quiz: Health Care Dilemma

WEEK 2

The Problem of Chronic Pain

Graded: Module Quiz: Personal Impact of Chronic Pain

Graded: Module Quiz: The Balance Between Health and Illness

WEEK 3

Common Pain Conditions and their Mechanisms

Graded: Module Quiz: Myofascial Pain

Graded: Module Quiz: TMD and Orofacial Pain

WEEK 4

Common Pain Conditions and their Mechanisms

Graded: Module Quiz: Headache

Graded: Module Quiz: Fibromyalgia

WEEK 5

Common Pain Conditions and their Mechanisms

Graded: Module Quiz: Arthritis

Graded: Module Quiz: Chronic Pain Mechanisms

WEEK 6

Risk and Protective Factors in the Seven Realms

Graded: Module Quiz: Body

Graded: Module Quiz: The Mind: The Cognitive Dimension

WEEK 7

Risk and Protective Factors in the Seven Realms

Graded: Module Quiz: Society

Graded: Module Quiz: Emotional Challenges

WEEK 8

Risk and Protective Factors in the Seven Realms

Graded: Module Quiz: The Lifestyle Realm

Graded: Module Quiz: The Environment

WEEK 9

Risk and Protective Factors in the Seven Realms

Graded: Module Quiz: Spirit: Gaining insight, hope, and purpose

Graded: Module Quiz: The Patient’s Story

WEEK 10

Implementing Transformative Care

Graded: Module Quiz: Transformative Health Care

Suggested Reading:
The Last Scroll

ENROLL IN COURSE