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Pain Management in Patients with Substance Use Disorders

12:45 - 1:45 pm

Presented by:

Learning Objectives

1. Describe the current state of the opioid crisis.

2. Explain the need for pain management in patients at-risk for, actively using, or in long-term recovery from a substance use disorder.

3. Illustrate the neurobiological pathways that are operational in both substance use disorders as well as acute and chronic pain conditions.

4. Explore non-opioid and non-pharmacological approaches to pain management.

5. Examine the proper use and titration of buprenorphine and other opioids in acute and chronic pain situations.


Janet K. Astle, BS Pharm, Ed.D., R.Ph.

Janet K. Astle, BS Pharm, EdD earned her pharmacy degree from the Duquesne University School of Pharmacy and her doctoral degree in Instructional Leadership from the School of Education. She is a licensed pharmacist in Pennsylvania and currently serves as the Associate Dean for Student Services for the Duquesne University School of Pharmacy. In her role as Associate Dean, she oversees areas dedicated to student support services, professional student organizations, government relations, and advisement. 


In addition to her responsibilities to the Office of Student Services, Dr. Astle serves as faculty coordinator for the Continuous Professional Development series of courses that run as a longitudinal thread throughout the curriculum. Her special areas of interest include legislative advocacy and substance use disorders. Dr. Astle was responsible for the development of two distinct substance use disorder certificate programs, targeted to health care professionals and students, with a focus on identification and referral as well as treatment and alternative approaches to pain management.


An active member of the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association, Dr. Astle serves as a director on its Educational Foundation Board. Most recently, she was named to the Institute for Research, Education, and Training in Addictions (IRETA) Board of Directors. Dr. Astle also serves as a member of the City of Pittsburgh Recovery Walk Steering Committee and the Diocese of Pittsburgh Addiction Recovery Ministry Steering Committee. Her recognitions include the Duquesne University School of Pharmacy Distinguished Alumnus Award, the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association Pharmacist of the Year Award, and the American Pharmacists Association Pharmacists Provide Care Champion. She is the 2019 recipient of the American Pharmacists Association Foundation and the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations (NASPA) Bowl of Hygeia Award. In 2021, she was further recognized by Pittsburgh City Council for her work as a Recovery Advocate in the field of substance use disorders.

Bridget Calhoun, B.S. Phys. Assist, MMS, DrPH

Bridget Calhoun has been a physician assistant since 1992 and involved in PA education for more than 20 years. After graduating from Saint Francis University, she began her career as a PA in transplant surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. In 1996, she joined the faculty at Duquesne University as the clinical coordinator. She earned a master's degree in medical sciences from Saint Francis University in 1997, and a master's degree in public health from the University of Pittsburgh in 2001. She became Chair of the Department of Physician Assistant Studies at Duquesne University in 2002, and earned a doctoral degree in infectious diseases and microbiology at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health in 2008.

As a national leader in PA education, Dr. Calhoun has been selected as a facilitator for the Basic Skills Faculty Pando Workshops offered by the Physician Assistant Education Association and most recently served as the Project Leader for 2 day workshops in Washington DC, Minneapolis, and Philadelphia. She has also worked as an accreditation consultant for other PA programs throughout the country, and as an expert witness on the practice of physician assistants in medical malpractice cases.

Dr.Calhoun has served as a member, then Chair of the Physician Assistant Education Association Faculty Development Council, been the recipient of a PAEA research grant and served as President of the Board of Directors for the American Chronic Pain Association. Since 2014, she has planned the physician assistant / nurse practitioner track during the fall meeting of the American Society of Regional Anesthesia (ASRA) and is currently planning the PA/NP track for the World Congress in Pain meeting for ASRA to be held in April 2018 in Manhattan.

Bridget Calhoun serves as a reviewer for the Journal of Physician Assistant Education and Health Promotion Practice and has reviewed submissions for the poster sessions at the annual fall meeting of ASRA. Dr. Calhoun maintains an active research agenda and continue to work clinically one per day per week at the Pittsburgh site of the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study.

Jane Cavanaugh, B.A., Ph.D.

Jane E. Cavanaugh, Ph.D. earned an undergraduate degree in Chemistry from Franklin and Marshall College in 1992 and her Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine in 1997. Her research interests focus on cell signaling pathways that decrease or increase in activity with neurodegenerative diseases and breast cancer. Jane is involved with community outreach to educate middle and high school students on the effects of drugs of abuse on the brain and body and the disease model of addiction. Through this outreach, over 3000 students at 50 schools or organizations learned about addiction and were given the knowledge to make informed decisions about their exposure to peer pressure and drugs of abuse.

Allison Morgan, B.S., Masters Phys Assist

Ms. Morgan attended Duquesne University's Physician Assistant Program and graduated cum laude in August 2000 with her Master of Physician Assistant degree. After graduation, Ms. Morgan worked in primary care with a women's health focus, urgent care and family medicine. She joined the Department of Physician Assistant Studies as a full-time faculty member in 2002. She teaches History and Physical Exam I, II, and III, Introduction to Patient Education and Counseling, and Substance Use Disorders curricular components. She was a co-recipient of the Duquesne University Creative Teaching Award in 2006 and again in 2014. Additionally, Ms. Morgan is the recipient of the 2016 Deans Award for Excellence in Teaching.  Ms. Morgan recently accepted a position in Addiction Medicine where she practices on a part-time basis.

Presentation Slides

Click below for the presentation slides.

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