Journal of the Korean Medical Association (대한의사협회지)
Journal of the Korean Medical Association (대한의사협회지), Vol.44(12) : 1270~1276, 2001
With prolonged life expectancy and economic development, most people want a good quality of life. In this regard, the pain control becomes an important part in the medical care in addition to the treatment of the disease per se. Anesthesiologists have been practicing pain medicine for decades, with the unique application of specific nerve blocks. Pain clinic is a specialized department for pain management. The main therapeutic modality practiced at pain clinics in Korea is the nerve block. Nerve block is performed by an injection of an anesthetic or destructive substance hear a nerve or nerve plexus to interrupt its function for a brief or extended period, respectively. Nerve blocks play an important role in diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of chronic pain. Nerve block intercepts the vicious cycle of pain as well as takes off the pain. Moreover, by improving the local blood flow, it also has an indirect effect on the treatment of pain. Sympathetic nerve block is used not only for pain relief, but also for the treatment of disease mainly accompanying sympathetic hyperactive symptoms. Pain clinic manages several kinds of intractable chronic pain. The rise in the number of pain clinics increases awareness of chronic pain with a considerable impact on our society.