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Staff & Board Staff & Board

Debra Nelson-Hogan

Debra Nelson-Hogan

Executive Director

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Debra Nelson-Hogan brings 40 years of communication, strategic planning, and educational expertise to her position, 20 of which have been in the chronic pain field. She worked as a contractor for RSDSA for 10 years, managing the organization’s communications (newsletter, web content, annual report and several brochures and reports) and helping with strategic planning. For the past 12 years, Debra has been Director of Education for the Academy of Integrative Pain Management (formerly the American Academy of Pain Management). where she was in charge of all educational programming. 

R. Norman Harden, MD

R. Norman Harden, MD

Chairman,Board of Directors

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R. Norman Harden, MD, served as the Director of the Center for Pain Studies and founded the Chronic Pain Care Center at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago for 21 years before retiring in 2015.

Education:

Medical Degree: Medical College of Georgia

Internship and residency: Medical University of South Carolina (neurology)

Fellowship: in pain control at the Pain Control and Rehabilitation Institute of Georgia (Emory University)

Other: Observership in Cancer Pain Control at Memorial Sloan-Kettering (Cornell University)

Clinical expertise: Pain management, particularly complex regional pain syndrome (also known as RSD), fibromyalgia, neuropathic pain, pain in older patients, pain in rehabilitation diagnoses, myofascial pain syndrome and headache.

Research: the study of complex regional pain syndromes, post amputation pain, pain in other rehabilitation diagnoses, musculoskeletal pain, neuropathic pain, osteoarthritis, the placebo response, opioid ‘induced’ hyperalgesia and headaches. He conducts pharmacological trials, outcomes development /validation, pain physiology and model validation.

 

Stephen Bruehl, PhD

Stephen Bruehl, PhD

Vice Chairman, Board of Directors

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Stephen Bruehl, Ph.D. is a tenured Professor of Anesthesiology at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee.

 

Education:

PhD, Clinical Psychology with Specialization in Health Psychology, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
Internship, Clinical Psychology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, Mississippi
MA, Clinical Psychology, University of Kentucky, Lexington,
BS, Psychology, Belmont University, Nashville, Tennessee

Research:  

  • six research projects funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health
  • co-leader of the project that developed the 2012 International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) diagnostic criteria for CRPS (the “Budapest Criteria
  • consulted with several pharmaceutical companies regarding development of new therapies for CRPS.  
  • in addition to ongoing interests in assessment of CRPS outcomes and the role of oxidative stress mechanisms in CRPS, his current research is exploring mechanisms underlying individual differences in responses to analgesic medications, and ways of optimizing the benefits vs. risks of opioid analgesic therapies.

Gary J. Bennett, PhD

Gary J. Bennett, PhD

Treasurer, Board of Directors

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Gary J. Bennett, PhD, is Professor and Canada Senior Research Chair in the Department of Anesthesia, the Faculty of Dentistry, and the Alan Edwards Centre for Research on Pain at McGill University, in Montreal, Canada and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology, School of Medicine, University of California, San Diego. 

 

Education

PhD: Experimental Psychology, from the Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University

Public Health Service Postdoctoral Fellow: Neurobiology and Anesthesiology Branch (NAB), National Institute of Dental Research, National Institutes of Health

BS: Psychology from Rutgers University

 

 Research:  

  • the mechanisms underlying neuropathic pain syndromes and on the preclinical development of new analgesics. 
  • the painful peripheral neuropathies caused by chemotherapeutic drugs.
  • a consultant and an investigator for several pharmaceutical companies for the design of clinical trials for agents to treat neuropathic pain. 

Candy McCabe, PhD RGN

Candy McCabe, PhD RGN

Board of Directors

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Candy McCabe is the Florence Nightingale Foundation Chair in Clinical Nursing Practice Research at the University of the West of England, Bristol and the Royal United Hospitals Foundation Trust, Bath, UK.

Education:

MSc, PhD, RGN: St. Thomas’ Hospital, London

Research:

  • increasing our understanding of the mechanisms and potential therapies for those with chronic unexplained pain, particularly that of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) and other neuropathic pain conditions
  • the relationship between the sensory and motor systems and pain; what part they may play in the development and perpetuation of pain; and how they can be modified to relieve pain.

 

Claudia Sommer, MD

Claudia Sommer, MD

Board of Directors

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Claudia Sommer, MD, is a Professor of Neurology at the University of Würzburg, Germany. She is a board certified neurologist and psychiatrist, having received training in psychiatry, neuropathology, experimental anesthesia, and neurology. At the University of Würzburg she serves as a consultant in neurology, she leads the Peripheral Nerve Laboratory, the Pain Research Laboratory, and she organizes outpatient clinics for patients with neuropathies, neuropathic pain or headache.

Research:

  • pathophysiology of peripheral neuropathies, of neuropathic pain, and of antibody-mediated diseases
  • development of national and international guidelines on peripheral neuropathies, nerve and skin biopsies, complex regional pain syndrome, fibromyalgia syndrome, neuropathic and facial pain.
  • how to evaluate nociceptor morphology and function in human pain diseases.

Peter Moskovvitz, MD

Peter Moskovvitz, MD

Board of Directors

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Lana Edwards Santoro, PhD

Lana Edwards Santoro, PhD

Board of Directors

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Dr. Lana Edwards Santoro works as a research associate, curriculum developer, and educational consultant in special education and literacy. She has taught pre-service teachers at the undergraduate and graduate level; consulted with state, local, and private agencies; and presented extensively about how to apply research-based, instructional strategies in the classroom. Dr. Santoro served as principal investigator on a series of federally-funded research studies on comprehension where she and her colleagues developed a widely-used curriculum for struggling readers. She also has firsthand experience with CRPS and knows the profound and far-reaching impact it can have on all aspects of life. As someone dedicated to “what the research says” about best practices in education, Dr. Santoro applies her knowledge of research and disability, and support for individualized, multi-disciplinary approaches to both education and treatment, in her advocacy work with the IRC.

Frank Huygen, MD, PhD

Frank Huygen, MD, PhD

Board of Directors

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Frank Huygen, MD, PhD, is an anesthesiologist pain specialist in “Erasmus Medical Centre” in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. He is director of the centre of pain medicine, a multidisciplinary pain clinic
specialized in acute, chronic benign and oncologic pain and palliative care Frank Huygen is principal investigator of the Academic Centre of Pain Medicine (Erasmusmc ACE).


Research:

  • interested in CRPS and has been involved in several research lines and theses focusing especially on CRPS, neuropathic and oncologic pain.