Men and Women Deal Differently With Pain

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Jill Chadwick

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At the 2017 Opioid Conference in Topeka this week, a national leader in gender differences in medicine is discussing how physicians need to be aware of the differences between men and women in dealing with chronic pain, and another common condition called osteoarthritis, a joint disease caused by cartilage loss. Dr. Kim Templeton, orthopedic surgeon at The University of Health System, discusses factors that have led to the current issues with opioid overuse and abuse, how opioids work, and how their use can lead to dependence and death. 

 In the video, Dr. Templeton reports women are more likely to have chronic pain and process it differently from men. Dr. Templeton also notes that being a woman increases your risk of osteoarthrosis, and the symptoms can be distinct from men. Doctors may not realize that, and she says many women have been conditioned not to challenge their doctors, but that it’s OK to bring up the subject if their doctor does not, especially when it comes to joint replacement.