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What Is Chronic Pain and Injury

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Updated October 17, 2011

Definition: Chronic pain and injury refers to the sort of physical injury, illness, or disease that develops slowly and is persistent and long-lasting, or constantly recurring over time. Many chronic injuries have mild symptoms and low-grade pain, and are often ignored or simply overlooked for months or even years. Ignoring such mild aches and pains can lead to a persistent chronic injury that is difficult to heal.

Cumulative Trauma and Overuse Injuries

Chronic injuries are sometimes referred to as cumulative trauma or overuse injuries.

Overuse injuries tend to have subtle or vague symptoms that develop slowly. They begin as a small, nagging ache or pain, and can grow into a debilitating injury if they aren't treated early. Overuse injuries are the result of repetitive use, stress and trauma to the soft tissues of the body (muscles, tendons, bones and joints) without proper time for healing. They are sometimes called cumulative trauma, or repetitive stress injuries.

Examples of chronic injuries include:

Also See

Also Known As: cumulative trauma, overuse injuries, repetitive stress injuries
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