ASRA Pain Medicine Update

Innovate and Rejuvenate in the Heart of Texas at the 17th Annual Pain Medicine Meeting

Jul 19, 2018

Maxim Eckmann, MD

As we prepare for the 17th Annual ASRA Pain Medicine Meeting, taking place November 15–17, 2018, at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort and Spa in San Antonio, Texas, we are coming off tremendous momentum from the recent 2018 World Congress on Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine this spring. The level of international interest and participation was unparalleled, with the educational content a true marvel of collaboration and ingenuity. Our aim is to build on that success with our Pain Medicine Meeting, offering a collection of thought-stimulating and valuable topics for practitioners in our field.

Trying Times and New Solutions

Increasingly, we face challenges in delivering high-quality pain care to a diverse and growing population of patients at the extremes of age. In the United States, we face an opioid epidemic that has been associated with a concurrent epidemic in chronic pain. Despite supply-side regulatory actions intended to limit opioid prescribing and production, opioid-related overdose deaths continue to rise in many states from other sources. These and many other factors may be contributing to burnout in health care providers, compounding the challenges of delivering the best therapies for pain.


“If you have felt the beginnings of burnout creeping into your career, we want to do our part to restore your energy and bring new inspiration during this conference so that you can take better care of yourself and your patients.”


Fortunately, new science and therapies are more available than ever, offering additional multimodal strategies to combat pain. We also now understand the importance of developing resilience in providers, allowing them to remain fulfilled and empathetic. The Pain Medicine Meeting will bring you innovative content to meet those needs through a more comprehensive and progressive curriculum full of the latest tools, from psychological interventions to novel pharmacotherapeutics and advanced procedures.

Keynote Speakers

We are thrilled to announce high-profile guest lecturers, including Surgeon General Dr Jerome Adams, who has been invited to speak on national strategies to combat the opioid epidemic in the United States. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Deputy Director Dr Wilson Compton and NIDA Division of Neuroscience and Behavior Director Dr Rita Valentino will speak on expansion of cannabinoids, drivers of opioid addiction, and sex differences in pain. Additionally, Dr Charles Berde will be honored at the Excellence in ASRA Awards Luncheon with the Bonica Award for his contributions to science and clinical care, particularly in the areas of pediatric pain management. These keynote speakers will complement an outstanding line-up of internationally renowned ASRA faculty. We are also proud to welcome speakers from diverse specialties, including neurosurgery, radiology, and psychology.

Highlighted Program Content

Refresher courses will cover the latest updates on neuromodulation, complex regional pain syndrome, opioids, and neuropathic pain. A broad complement of parallel sessions will hit on multiple key areas, including a special session titled “Osteoarthritis of Major Joints: Role of Interventions in the Continuum of Care.” Other cutting-edge sessions will discuss regenerative medicine, roles for ketamine, low back pain, pediatric pain, sex differences in pain, palliative care, and cancer pain.

Eighteen problem-based, lunch-and-learn sessions will allow for relaxed and direct conversation with leading experts on high-value practical topics for the pain provider, such as best practices in neuromodulation and surgical management, business and career decisions, headaches, telemedicine, and transitional pain services. Exciting interactive sessions designed to stimulate discussion include advanced topics such as a multidisciplinary panel on the role of percutaneous spine decompression and augmentation. The highly attended physical exam skills special session is back by popular demand—but don't overlook other outstanding topics on interpreting imaging and electromyography; controlled substance risk mitigation, including cannabis; burnout identification and resilience building; and the importance of advocacy.

The ASRA-ASA Practice Management Portfolio closes the loop on the latest clinical quality measures, quality improvement methods, negotiation, care team models, various site-of-service practice efficiencies, and impact of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act on small groups. To satisfy expansive interests, a variety of ePosters, abstracts, non-CME breakfast and lunch presentations, and excellent exhibit hall booths are readily available.

Workshops and Interactive Sessions

In addition to the main meeting sessions, you will have the opportunity to attend many hands-on workshops for ultrasound and fluoroscopy. The highly popular ultrasound workshops offer a multistaged curriculum that prepares individuals interested in pursuing the Pain and Musculoskeletal Interventional Ultrasound Certificate. Latest techniques in spine augmentation, peripheral nerve treatments, conventional and cooled radiofrequency, regenerative medicine, craniofacial blocks, and neuromodulation are just a small sampling of valuable experiences delivered by world-class faculty at a great price.

Physician Assistant, Nurse Practitioner, and Nursing Program

We realize the importance of non-physician providers such as physician assistants (PAs) and nurse practitioners (NPs) in our busy health care system and continue to be excited about the growth of this part of our program. In addition to the dedicated PA/NP/Nursing program, which now features medico-legal issues in pain practice and creative nonopioid treatments, participants also have the opportunity to attend targeted, interactive sessions on intrathecal or spinal cord stimulation therapy and diagnostic imaging, as well as the hands-on physical exam workshop. Plus, don't miss the PA/NP/ Nursing Meet and Greet on Friday at 9:45 a.m. in the exhibit hall!

Resident and Fellow Program

New for 2018, residents and fellows are encouraged to attend the main meeting lectures as future colleagues in pain medicine. Returning for 2018, the very popular resident- and fellow-geared procedural workshops on fluoroscopy and ultrasound-guided procedures will fill up early, so register soon. Residents and fellows also have an opportunity to enjoy a beverage while networking with other trainees and members of the Association of Pain Program Directors at the Resident/Fellow and Pain Program Directors Meet and Greet on Friday at 6 p.m.

A Relaxed and Regenerating Venue

The JW Marriot Hill Country Resort and Spa During your time at this family-friendly, full-service resort with PGA-certified Tournament Players Club golf courses, find yourself immersed in a quiet and relaxing venue that feeds your spirit while you feed your mind. Stretch your wings in a grand space against the picturesque backdrop of the beautiful Texas Hill Country. We will have yoga classes available before main meeting times for interested attendees. If you have felt the beginnings of burnout creeping into your career, we want to do our part to restore your energy and bring new inspiration during this conference so that you can take better care of yourself and your patients.

Meanwhile, don't forget special events like the popular Wine and Bubbly Networking Reception and Exhibit Hall Grand Opening, which will be held on Thursday evening at 5:15 p.m. Finally, plan to stay for the Saturday Annual Meeting Celebration, where faculty and participants will enjoy a good-ole time under the big Texas sky.

Register at www.asra.com/pain

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