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Treating Pain

Treating pain is an important part of a military doctor's job. Here, a medic prepares a dose of morphine for an injured soldier in Iraq in 2006.

Robert A. Sabo/Getty Images

Pain treatments can help injured troops or soldiers suffering from "deployment aches," the general aches and pains that come with heavy lifting in the field. Whether they're suffering from illness or injury, pain management is an important issue for military doctors. Managing pain can help reduce an injured person's stress levels and help him heal more quickly.

Just like in Civil War days, morphine is still the most popular pain treatment, but there are some new innovations in pain management that are much safer and less addictive. Doctors can now use treatments that actually block the nerves that are causing pain. They administer numbing medication, such as Novocain, directly to the nerve.

Of course, no doctor has treatments for every disease out there, and next we'll see how Army doctors are working on research to develop innovative drug treatments and vaccines for new, rare and serious infectious diseases.

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