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Ochsner Offers Tips for Pain Awareness Month

BATON ROUGE – In recognition of September as National Pain Awareness Month, Ochsner Baton Rouge offers insights for preventing and treating chronic pain.

According to U.S. Pain Foundation, 50 million Americans live with chronic pain, or pain that lasts most days or every day for three months or more. Of this group, 20 million experience high-impact chronic pain that interferes with basic functioning and activities of daily living.

Ochsner physiatrist Dr. Erin Derbigny says the most common cause of muscle pain is tension and stress. Seemingly small things like body positioning, body mechanics and repetitive activity can contribute to long-term pain or soreness.

For those who sit for more than an hour or two at a time, Dr. Derbigny recommends an ergonomic desk and proper posture. She also suggests setting an alarm for every 20-30 minutes as a reminder to get up, move around and change position.

“When you sit in one position for too long, yes, things tighten up. Yes, things are going to ache more when you're sitting for a period of long time.”

Dr. Derbigny says developing habits to improve chronic pain often take time and hard work. She recommends patients keep a diary to track their progress over time.

“Focus on the small improvements. It might be that instead of feeling pain at a ‘10’ every day drops down to a ‘7.’ Or, you might notice you’re having less headaches per week,” she says. “It’s small gains like these that are what you want to pay attention to and really try and capitalize on.”

For appointments across the Baton Rouge region, call (225) 761-5200 or visit In-person appointments and video visits are available online and through the MyOchsner patient portal.


About Ochsner Baton Rouge

Greater Baton Rouge is home to Ochsner Medical Center - Baton Rouge, a full-service, 150-bed hospital and 13 Health Centers across Ascension, East Baton Rouge, Iberville, Livingston and Tangipahoa Parishes – including Ochsner Cancer Center – Baton Rouge. Over 2,300 employees serve patients in the Greater Baton Rouge area, including more than 250 physicians and Advanced Practice Providers whose collective dedication to patient care is recognized for quality excellence by Becker’s Hospital Review, Healthgrades, Truven Health Analytics and Leapfrog. Ochsner Baton Rouge is part of Ochsner Health, Louisiana’s largest non-profit healthcare delivery system committed to inspiring healthier lives and stronger communities by preventing diseases, providing patient-centered care that is accessible, affordable, convenient and effective, and building partnerships with innovative organizations that share our vision. In 2021, Ochsner Health treated more than 1 million people from every state and 75 countries, providing the latest medical breakthroughs and therapies, including digital medicine for chronic conditions and telehealth specialty services. Ochsner's team of more than 36,000 employees and 4,600 providers in Louisiana and the Gulf South are working to reinvent the future of health and wellness in the region and beyond through its cutting-edge Connected Health digital medicine program. To learn more about Ochsner Baton Rouge, please visit our website and follow us on Facebook.