Many veterans suffer from chronic pain resulting from their service to the country. Many veterans also face issues with overuse of opioids that help ease that pain.
Using nontraditional therapies to help solve the first problem without contributing to the second was one of the questions that came up Friday at an unusual congressional subcommittee hearing, held in a hangar at the New Hampshire National Guard facility in Concord.
“I think we’ve realized that the medications are much more dangerous than we used to think, but we know we can’t just leave patients hanging and say, ‘We’re not going to give you medications any more – good luck!’ ” said Dr. Julie Franklin of the White River Junction VA Medical Center, one of several participants in the two-hour session that featured both of the state’s U.S. representatives.
“The approach of the conventional medical community to things like acupuncture is really changing a lot,” Franklin said. “When I was in residency or medical school I did not receive training (on issues such as) when do you refer for acupuncture (or) when do you think of yoga. I’ve learned a lot recently; I was trained in acupuncture by the VA.”
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