The Pain Management Center at Stanford Health Care offers a
comprehensive range of services for patients with acute or chronic
pain. Through the combined expertise of a multidisciplinary team of
pain specialists, Stanford offers the most advanced treatment options
currently available, in a supportive, compassionate environment.
The last decade has seen dramatic changes in the way we understand
pain. Rather than viewing pain as simply a symptom of trauma,
infection, inflammation, or surgery, we now see it as a discrete
disease entity —one that fundamentally alters the entire nervous
system. In a major recent advance, neuroimaging tools have allowed us
to peer inside the human brain in ways once only dreamed
about—unlocking mysteries of where pain is perceived and processed,
how it affects the brain, and how it can act to change our thoughts
For the first time, we have the tools to effectively explore the
impact of pain on the brain and can use this information to create the
comprehensive interdisciplinary treatment needed to prevent or reverse
these changes. Our ultimate goal is to lessen or stop our patient's
pain and restore and enhance their quality of life.
Details on current pain research in Dr. Mackey's Systems
Neuroscience and Pain Lab, including information for prospective study
subjects, are available at the SNAPL website.
Sean Mackey, MD, PhD, held a key leadership role in developing the NIH Health and Human Services National Pain Strategy. Dr. Mackey also served as co-chair of the committee that produced the National Pain Strategy report.
Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.
Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.
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provides comprehensive services to refer and track patients, as well
as provides the latest information and news for physicians and office
staff. For help with all referral needs and questions visit Referring Physicians.