EMS World

AUG 2018

EMS World Magazine is the most authoritative source in the world for clinical and educational material designed to improve the delivery of prehospital emergency medical care.

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Page 41 of 51

EMSWORLD.com | AUGUST 2018 41 major role. It's not in their heads—they really do feel things differently. But that level and duration of pain is difficult to fathom, and outsiders strug- gle to remain emp athetic. Montera's friends and family began to question the entire existence of her pain. They sug- gested she was just in it for the medica- tions. Pain was her daily companion, its complex origin making it impossible to easily relate or explain, so it was better to say nothing at all. She was becoming isolated, unable to relate to her family, her husband, struggling with a new baby and a career she loved. As the months went on with no change, she began to do her own research. In her rural area specialized resources were dif ficult to find. For tunately she came across one of the few pelvic pain special- ists in the countr y, just three hours away. She met with John Slocumb, MD, at the University of Colorado, without any other options. He listened without judgment, and not only did he actually hear what she was saying, he recognized her symp- toms and gave her a diagnosis nobody else had considered. He told her she had interstitial cystitis and he would help her. It only took three years. Anne Montera's journey didn't end with a dia gnosis. Nex t month we will talk about just how complex the body's response to pain can be and what hap- pens when medical providers fail to prop- erly manage patients with chronic pain. REFERENCES 1. Fassler J. How Doctors Take Women's Pain Less Seriously. The Atlantic, 2015 Oct 15. 2. Hof fman DE, Tarzian A J. The girl who cried pain: A bias against women in the treatment of pain. J Law Med Ethics, 2001 Spring; 29(1): 13–27. 3. Kiesel L. Women and pain: Disparities in experience and treatment. Harvard Health Publishing, 2017 Oct 9. 4. Edwards L. The Gender Gap in Pain. New York Times, 2013 Mar 16. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Tracey Loscar, NRP, FP-C, is chief of operations for Matanuska-Susitna (Mat-Su) Borough EMS in Wasilla, Alaska. She is a member of the EMS World editorial advisor y board. Contac t her at taloscar@gmail.com or www.taloscar.com. GoHCL.com 1.800.848.1633 WE'RE NOT PLAYING AROUND WHEN WE SAY "OVERDOSE PREVENTION!" For More Information Circle 27 on Reader Service Card Women who received coronary bypass surgery were only half as likely to be prescribed painkillers as men who had undergone the same procedures.

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