What Is Nociceptive Pain and How Is It Treated?

What Is Nociceptive Pain and How Is It Treated?

Most people who suffer from chronic pain know one thing for certain: They hurt. What they may not know is that there are different types of pain, and knowing which type of pain you’re experiencing plays a big role in your treatment.

Broadly, pain can be divided into two types: neuropathic and nociceptive. Neuropathic pain originates in your nerves and nervous system, while nociceptive pain arises from damage to your muscles, bones, or other tissues. Of the two, nociceptive pain is more common.

At Pacific Pain and Regenerative Medicine in Irvine and Los Angeles, California, Hasan Badday, MD, and his team offer medication management and other pain therapies for both nociceptive pain and neuropathic pain. 

Here’s what Dr. Badday and our team want you to know about nociceptive pain, how it differs from neuropathic pain, and how it’s treated.

Nociceptive pain 101

Pain happens when a stimulus acts on special receptor neurons that are found in your skin, muscle, joint, bone, and gut tissue. When receptors sense one or more stimuli, they send “pain messages” to your brain.

Different types of receptors respond to different types of stimuli, including mechanical, chemical, and temperature stimuli. Some receptors respond to a combination of stimuli. For instance, if something very hot is pressing on your skin, nociceptive receptors sense both heat and mechanical stimuli.

Injuries associated with nociceptive pain include:

Nociceptive pain ranges from dull aches to sharp cramps, and it can be chronic or recurring.

By contrast, examples of neuropathic pain include sciatica and other diseases and conditions originating in your nerves. Back or neck pain caused by a bulging or slipped disc is another example of neuropathic pain.

Treating — and relieving — nociceptive pain

Treatment for both neuropathic and nociceptive pain has two primary goals: to relieve painful symptoms and to treat the underlying cause. These goals help you feel better while also reducing or preventing symptoms in the future.

Before recommending treatment, Dr. Badday performs an exam and evaluations to identify the underlying cause of your pain. In addition to a physical exam and a review of your symptoms, he often recommends diagnostic imaging, lab tests, and other evaluations based on your specific symptoms.

Depending on your needs, your treatment plan may include:

Because nociceptive pain can be complex, both in cause and symptoms, many patients benefit from a combination of therapies to find relief.

Acute pain that’s related to an injury may resolve fairly quickly, within a matter of weeks or less. Chronic pain, like arthritis, can last much longer. Regular office visits and evaluations enable Dr. Badday to adjust and fine-tune your treatment so it remains effective in preventing symptoms and supporting your body’s healing process.

Pain relief tailored to your needs

Pain can take a toll on your life physically and emotionally. To learn how we can help, book an appointment online or over the phone with Dr. Badday and our team at Pacific Pain and Regenerative Medicine today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

How to Manage Your Pain with Lifestyle Changes

If you’re one of the millions of people suffering with chronic pain, there are lots of medical treatments that can help. But for many patients, a few lifestyle changes can make a dramatic difference in your symptoms. Here are seven to try.

What You Didn't Know About Massage Therapy

Massage therapy isn’t just about relaxing — it has some powerful health benefits too. Here are seven things you may not know about massage, including ways it could help you improve your health and reduce painful symptoms.

The Most Common Sports Injuries

Sports injuries are common, but the good news is, most can be easily treated with conservative therapies. The key is to seek medical treatment early, before a “mild” injury gets worse. Here are five injuries you should be aware of.

Who Can Benefit from Medication Management?

Medications play essential roles in helping us stay healthy at every stage of life. But taken inappropriately, they also can cause serious and even life-threatening problems. Medication management can help. Here’s how to tell if it’s right for you.