The Serbian Association for Pain Research and Treatment (SAPRT), together with the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Novi Sad organized the International Symposium on the topic of “Prevention and therapy of chronic pain“, which took place on the first and second of October 2021 at the Medical Faculty in Novi Sad. The meeting was held by the Regional Ministry of Health, Regional Ministry of Science and Higher Education, with the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Novi Sad and the Clinical Center of Vojvodina.

Report

The program, which represents the culmination of a year of planning and effort, was both informative and successful in stimulating an excellent discussion among the attendees.

Our knowledge of pain medicine continues to develop and evolve. The Symposium organized by the UITBS-SAPRT is a good indicator of the multiple changes that occur in this field.

The Symposium was organized in accordance with the current epidemic situation, with all of the preventive measures in place. It was a resounding success, with doctors of different specialties and people from other fields of health care. 24 experts in the field of pain medicine presented their work in sessions and this was an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas, share different experiences and discuss certain dilemmas with colleagues from the same field of interest. The speakers were all esteemed experts from Serbia and abroad. The program was organized in 5 sessions:

SESSION 1 – Prevention and Therapy of Chronic Cancer Pain- Moderators: Tomašević-Todorović S, Pjević M, Patarica Huber E.;

SESSION 2 – Prevention and The Treatment of Chronic Noncancer pain -Moderators: Radunović G, Tomašević-Todorović S, Bošković K.

SESSION 3 – Cholistic Approach to Patients with chronic pain -Moderators: Novaković B, Ukropina S, Naumović N.

SESSION 4 – Chronic postsurgical pain and neuropathic pain-Moderators: Pjević M, Tomašević-Todorović S, Gvozdenović Lj.

SESSION 5 – Complementary methods-Moderators: Konstantinović Lj, Simić S, Vicković S.

The speakers of this symposium were:

Prof. dr Brona Fullen, Dr Andreas Kopf, Prof. dr Per Hansson, Prof. dr Miroslava Pjević, Prof. dr Snežana Tomašević-Todorović Doc dr Mirka Lukić-Šarkanović, Prof. dr Ljiljana Gvozdenović, Prof. dr Dejan Nešić, Prof dr. Ljubica Konstantinović, Dr Eržebet Patarica-Huber,Doc. dr Daliborka Bursać,Prof. dr Katarina Savić-Vujović,Dr Tomi Kovačević, ,Prof. dr Ksenija Bošković, Doc. dr Goran Radunović, Prof. dr Aleksandra Mikov, Prof. dr Budimka Novaković, Prof. dr Nada Naumović, Prof. dr Aleksandar Knežević, Prof. dr Vojislava Bogarski, Doc. dr Mirko Grajić, Dr Efthimios J Kouloulas, Doc. dr Saša Miličević, Prof. dr Svetlana Simić.

Conclusion

The approach a doctor has towards a patient, their skills of communication, having a doctor-patient relationship built on trust, as well as having patience and empathy for the individual and their family, are of tremendous importance in the treatment of chronic pain. Also, it is important to keep in mind the health literacy of the patient and accordingly adjust the questionnaires and surveys.

A significant number of patients with chronic pain turn to certain methods of treatment, for which there isn’t a clear evidence of their efficiency and safety. Examples include use of cannabis, collagen, ostheopathic and chiropractic methods, and prolotherapy. Further studies are needed to validate the use of these methods in pain management.

Multiple medical and nutritional problems present an obstacle in application of pharmacological pain relief therapy, as a result of the problem of interaction of drugs used in the treatment. A multidisciplinary approach based on close cooperation of doctors of different specialties, in different stages of treatment, is crucial for an effective therapy of chronic pain.

We are grateful to EFIC, to lecturers, and to all the participants involved in making this meeting a success.

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