Monday, June 27, 2016

Understanding Chronic Pain

An anesthesiologist, Annie Burton, MD pursues fellowship training in interventional pain management through the University of Minnesota Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Earlier, Dr. Annie Burton earned her MD from the University of Minnesota Medical School.

When doctors diagnose a patient with chronic pain, it means that the patient has experienced pain lasting more than half a year. In the United States, chronic pain is fairly common, with an estimated 100 million Americans living with this condition. Often, the pain centers on problem areas such as the back, head, and joints. Chronic pain can also degrade physical and mental health.

The field of pain management seeks to help patients impacted by chronic pain. Doctors who specialize in pain management have a wide variety of tools at their disposal, including medications and physical therapy. Moreover, patients may benefit from mental health counseling that teaches them how to effectively cope with feelings of hopeless and anger associated with chronic pain.

For those with especially severe symptoms there are pain centers around the country that offer both inpatient and outpatient care.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Buprenorphine for Addiction and Chronic Pain

Annie Burton, MD, stands out as a board-certified anesthesiologist. Experienced in the treatment of patients with chronic pain, Annie Burton, MD, pursues an interest in addiction medicine and co-morbid pain conditions.

Chronic pain and substance use disorder can be difficult co-presenting conditions for a physician to treat. Statistics suggest that close to 33 percent of patients with chronic pain conditions also present with addiction disorders, while those with addictions to opioids frequently report symptoms indicative of such pain. Patients with these co-occurring conditions are at a higher than average risk for overdose while also being prone to worsening of pain symptoms as a result of withdrawal.

Recently, the analgesic properties of buprenorphine have come to the attention of the medical community as a potential therapy for chronic pain and addiction. Buprenorphine itself has proven effective at treating moderate to severe chronic pain. Potentially useful as a split dose for co-occurring treatment of addiction and chronic pain, such an approach requires careful monitoring but has proven successful in a number of challenging cases.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The Causes and Symptoms of Cleft Lips and Palates

Annie Burton, MD, trained in interventional pain management with the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Minnesota. Annie Burton, MD, has had the opportunity to travel to Guatemala on several occasions over the past five years on mission trips. There, she treated children with cleft lips and palates through surgical intervention.

A defect with which some children are born, cleft palates are traced to the initial six to 10 weeks of pregnancy, when the tissues forming the nose, mouth, and upper jaw fuse and create the upper lip and mouth roof. The cleft reflects a situation where the mouth and lip do not come together properly, which leaves a physical separation or split.

The cleft lip and palate are relatively common birth defects and affect approximately one in 700 babies in the United States. The malformation makes it difficult for children to eat and drink and also increases the risk of ear infection and hearing loss. Repairing a cleft palate typically requires a series of surgeries over the first 18 years, with the first one occurring before six months of age.