We propose to hold a conference on the role of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) in pain management and research following the annual meeting of the American Pain Society (APS) in May 2013. The APS is an interdisciplinary community comprised of scientists, clinicians and other professionals committed to the pursuit of furthering knowledge of pain mechanisms and pain relief. The purpose of the APS satellite conference, Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Roles in Chronic Pain Management and Research, is to raise awareness of CAM pain management approaches and specific challenges for CAM pain research scientists and clinicians. The conference will highlight the state-of-science in chronic pain research as it relates to CAM. The primary goal of the conference is to create interdisciplinary exchange and encourage potential collaborations among chronic pain clinicians and researchers in CAM. The conference will address the multiple challenges and opportunities associated with current CAM pain research. Sessions are planned to promote interactions between clinicians, scientists, and trainees with interest in applying CAM to chronic pain. Poster sessions and a symposia are also specifically planned to highlight contributions made by early career scholars and investigators. These submissions will be peer-reviewed prior to acceptance. CAM approaches for pain management is an emerging emphasis area within APS;the development of this conference is intended to strengthen the presence of CAM as a research interest area within APS.
Chronic pain compromises quality of life for many and often goes inadequately treated or relieved. The consequences of unrelieved pain represent a major Public Health problem. To seek pain relief, a significant percentage of the population spend substantial out-of- pocket resources on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) including (but not limited to, natural products such as herbal supplements, and manual therapies and mind/body practices such as chiropractic care, massage, acupuncture, and meditation. The APS satellite conference on CAM will bring together APS members with CAM researchers and practitioners and provide a unique opportunity for exchange of knowledge and forging of new partnerships.