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Members of the military and veterans are disproportionally affected by pain, and the government is searching for ways to help them deal with this widespread and growing problem. New research being conducted thanks to multiple grants recently awarded by the US Department of Health and Human Services, the US Department of Defense, and the US Veterans Administration will investigate the feasibility, safety and effectiveness for a number of non-drug approaches for pain management and related conditions.

Kelli Allen, PhD

(Republished from the division of rheumatology, allergy and immunology)

Among the types of approaches being studied are mindfulness/meditation, movement interventions such as yoga and tai chi, massage, acupuncture, and cognitive behavior therapy. Dr. Kelli Allen is part of a collaborative team that includes investigators at the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs in Durham, NC, as well as Duke University’s School of Medicine, with a project aimed at improving access to appropriate non-pharmacological therapies for veterans with back pain.

“Collectively, this research has the potential to help define which types of non-drug pain interventions can make the greatest difference for the millions of veterans and members of the military whose quality of life has been impacted by chronic pain,” said Dr. Allen, who is a Research Professor of Medicine and faculty member at the UNC Thurston Arthritis Research Center. Additional information about the research involved in this initiative is available via this news release.