U of M Expert Alert: Chronic pain and seasonal weather changes
MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL (11/13/2023) — The cold air is returning, and those with chronic pain may feel the effects of this seasonal weather change. Some research shows an association between increased pain and low barometric pressure, while other research has been inconclusive.
Clarence Shannon, MD, with the University of Minnesota Medical School and M Health Fairview, talks about how changes in the weather can impact chronic pain and how people can cope.
Clarence Shannon, MD
“There have been several studies that suggest a correlation between weather and increased pain, but the correlation may not be a simple cause-and-effect relationship. Cloudy or overcast days may lead to a depressed mood in some individuals, causing them to focus more on a pre-existing painful condition. Similarly, during the winter months, we may not be as active. Decreased activity may predispose to increased stiffness and subsequent pain in some individuals.”
“During the winter months, it is important for us to remain active and find activities that we enjoy that can be performed in the home, if needed. Staying connected with friends and remaining active can help us achieve these goals. It is important to continue with any medical regimen prescribed by your health care practitioner, and equally important to stretch daily and consider participating in a workout plan offered by one of many virtual platforms or apps.”
Clarence Shannon, MD
Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota Medical School
Dr. Clarence Shannon is an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota Medical School and an anesthesiologist with M Health Fairview. He is particularly interested in non-opioid treatments through alternative medications, interventional procedures and/or pain-control devices that enable full engagement in exercise and neurobehavioral counseling.
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