AUGUST 2015

The Translational Research Institute on Pain in Later Life (TRIPLL) is an NIH funded Edward R. Roybal Center. Our eNewsletter features recent news, events and funding opportunities related to pain and aging. In this issue we highlight studies that explore the prevalence of knee pain and hip fractures, the use of a pain perception technique, and managing pain in nursing home cancer residents; as well as upcoming events and recent funding opportunities.
In This Issue
                          Congratulations to our 2016 Pilot Awardees!
 
Investigator: Phil Adams, Interaction Design Lab, Cornell University
Project Title: Improving the Self-Management of Chronic Pain through Momentary Assessment
Please click here for more information about this project.
 
Investigator: 
Min Hane Aung, PhD, Cornell University
Project Title: An Auto-Personalizing Mobile Phone Application to Encourage Regular Activity for Chronic Back Pain Management
Please click here for more information about this project.
 
Investigator: 
Matthew Lohman, PhD, MHS, Weill Cornell Medical College
Project Title: Investigating the Inter-Relationships between Pain, Frailty, and Depression Among Older Adults in the Community and/or Receiving Nursing Care
Please click here for more information about this project.
 
Investigator:
  Carla Boutin-Foster, MD, Weill Cornell Medical College
Project Title: Testing New Approaches to Inducing Positive Affect and Expanding a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Technique to Dialysis Patients in a Low Income, Community-Based Setting
Please click here for more information about this project.
 
Investigator:
  Nancy Wells, PhD, Cornell University
Project Title: Nature as an Intervention for Older Adults with Chronic Pain
Please click here for more information about this project.
RECENT RESEARCH

Prevalence of Knee Pain and Knee Osteoarthritis (OA) in Southern Sweden and the Proportion that Seeks Medical Care

The authors of a recent study published in the Journal of Rheumatology examined the prevalence of frequent knee pain in middle-aged and elderly Swedish residents. Study subjects with pain in one or both knees for at least four weeks within the 12-month study period were classified as having frequent knee pain. The study found that many of the elderly patients view chronic joint pain as a part of aging and are likely to consult a healthcare professional only when symptoms become severe and interfere with mobility and sleep. As a result, many of the residents with frequent knee pain did not seek medical care or engage in treatment and had little knowledge about their pain. The elderly patients that did report their pain to a medical professional continued to have persistent knee pain. Authors conclude that better management of patients with knee pain or osteoarthritis in primary care may bring awareness of non-drug treatments and may result in more elderly patients seeking medical care.  Read full article   

Anodal Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation for Chronic Pain in the Elderly: a Pilot Study

A study recently published in the journal Aging Clinical and Experimental Research investigated the effect of a technique called Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS), a non-invasive neuromodulatory that can affect human pain perception. Study goals included looking into whether the "primary motor cortex anodal tDCS treatment reduces chronic foot pain intensity, depression, and pain-related anxiety symptoms in patients with chronic plantar fasciitis." The treatment was associated with significant decrease in pain medication use. Patients stated that they saw improvements in the mobility and function of their feet, in addition to a decrease in pain-related anxiety and intensity.  Read full article   
Prospective Study of Predictive Factors of Changes in Pain and Help Function After Hip Fracture Among the Elderly

In an effort to identify predictors of pain and declines in function among elderly patients, investigators conducted a prospective cohort study published in the Journal of Osteoporosis International. The study consisted of men and women ages 65 and older with a fall-related hip fracture. These 740 older adults retrospectively completed pre-fracture status questionnaires andwere then prospectively followed for 6 months (n=546); a randomly selected subset was followed for 18 months (n=356). Study results suggest that living in a long-term health facility is an important predictor of pain deterioration at 6 and 18 months after the hip fracture. Living in a long-term health facility is "negatively correlated with the level of physical activity and positively correlated with dependence." In addition, the study also found that patients with lower monthly incomes had greater deterioration in hip function. One explanation the authors provided was that patients with higher socioeconomic status have better access to prevention, treatment, and rehabilitation and live a more active lifestyle. The authors suggest that promoting exercise in elderly populations may improve the prognosis of a hip fracture as it will slow bone loss and maintain muscle strength.  Read full article
 
Pain Management in Nursing Home Residents with Cancer

In the context of the recent implementation of pain management quality indicators, the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society featured a study assessing pain management improvements of nursing home residents with cancer. Data obtained from a federally mandated comprehensive clinical assessment were used to determine prevalence, frequency, and intensity of pain and use of analgesics in residents of Medicare- or Medicaid-certified nursing facilities. The study found that the majority of nursing home residents (N=8,094) diagnosed with cancer experienced pain, and that improvements in analgesic pain treatment during the first week of nursing home admission have been modest.  Read full article
 
UPCOMING EVENTS
September Work in Progress Seminar 

September 16, 2015 
12:00PM - 1:30PM

Presenter(s): 
Nancy Wells, PhD, Associate Professor, College of Human Ecology, Cornell University 
Heather Yeo, MD, Assistant Professor of Surgery, Weill Cornell Medical College 
  
Please email Cara Kenien at cak2017@med.cornell.edu for more information about how to attend the meeting. 
TRIPLL Networking Event  

October 21, 2015
Ithaca, NY - Cornell University 
4:30PM - 6:30PM

The Translational Research Institute on Pain in Later Life (TRIPLL) is planning to hold an informational networking reception focused on aging and health. The purpose of this broad theme is for TRIPLL faculty and staff members to engage with Ithaca faculty members who focus on aging research to potentially forge new collaborations and partnerships. 

Gerontological Society of America Annual Scientific Meeting 

November 18-22, 2015
Early Bird Registration: Until September 15, 2015
Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin
Orlando, FL

The 2015 conference theme challenges researchers to highlight possible consequences of early life effects on aging, be it through biomedical events, nutrition, socioeconomic status, educational opportunities, stressful life experiences, or social relationships. The conference theme also challenges educators, both in the formal academic setting, and in communicating with the general public, to transmit the importance of lifelong experiences and lifestyle choices on the process of aging. Through the diverse research disciplines of our members and the expansion of our view of aging as a lifelong process, we have the potential to truly enhance the prospect of healthy aging.  Please  click here   for more information.
RECENT PAIN AND AGING RELATED FUNDING
Diversity Supplement (Research Supplement to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research funded by National Institute on Aging (NIA)/National Institutes of Health (NIH)
 
NIH/NIA 
 
Deadline:  September 30, 2015

TRIPLL is accepting applications for a Research Supplement to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research funded by National Institute on Aging (NIA)/National Institutes of Health (NIH). P rojects must directly connect to the translation of behavior change science research to address the problem of later-life pain.  Funding is typically for 2 years and used to support salary and other project related needs.  Interested candidates should contact Cara Kenien ( cak2017@med.cornell.edu ) to express interest More information
Developing the Therapeutic Potential of the Endocannabinoid System for Pain Treatment (R01)
 
NIH/ NIA
  
Funding Amount: Up to $500,000
Deadline: Standard Dates Apply (Please visit website) 
 
The purpose of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to support projects that will elucidate the therapeutic potential of the cannabinoids and endocannabinoid system in the development of mechanism-based therapies for pain.  More information
We welcome your feedback about what you would like include in future eNewsletters. 
Email suggestions and news items to cak2017@med.cornell.edu.
   
The Translational Research Institute on Pain in Later Life (TRIPLL) is an
NIA funded Edward R. Roybal Center with a focus on persistent pain due to both cancer and non-cancer related causes. TRIPLL is a collaboration between investigators at Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University in Ithaca and The Hebrew Home at Riverdale.