Issues Magazine

Issues Magazine 102

An overview of what's in this edition of Issues.
What is pain, why does it happen and why do some people continue to experience pain when pain subsides in other people?
History abounds with attempts to achieve pain relief, and they will continue into the future.
Pain research is beginning to mature, with the promise of new treatments for people living with pain.
There is a role for opioid medication for all types of severe pain, but the evidence for its use with long-term persistent pain is more uncertain and the side-effects greater.
Empathy for someone else’s pain shares common characteristics with synaesthesia, a sensory condition where individuals can smell music or taste colours.
Women report more-intense pain than men in virtually every disease category, according to Stanford University School of Medicine investigators who mined a huge collection of electronic medical records to establish the broad gender difference to a high level of statistical significance.
Very few people live life without pain at some stage. Our understanding of pain has improved but it is still not managed well.
A holistic plan is essential, including physical, emotional and social support, to manage chronic pain in adolescents and children.
Pain is not simply a measure of tissue damage. It is a conscious experience that emerges in response to activity in a network of brain cells that are spread across the brain.
Australia’s National Pain Strategy was developed amidst a growing awareness of the many costs of pain to individuals and communities.
Taking a marijuana pill is more effective at relieving pain than smoking the drug, a new US study of daily marijuana smokers has shown, but the authors warn the findings may not translate to non-regular users.
The campaign initiated by Chronic Pain Australia last year aims to increase understanding and reduce the cost of what has been an “invisible” issue.
Palliative care professionals have a unique role to play in the management of pain.
Rehabilitation is part of the common approach to managing pain conditions. Each experience of pain is unique, and calls for the expertise of several health disciplines.
Social psychologist Prof E. Tory Higgins discusses his model of how humans interpret and appreciate reward and punishment, and offers unusual approaches to motivate people to action.
We now know that there’s much more to pain than simply what is happening in the painful body part, and attention has turned to the role of the brain. But not even this mysterious organ can tell us everything we need to know about pain, at least not yet.
Women are at a greater risk of developing several chronic pain conditions and display increased sensitivity to pain compared with men.
Ten percent of the world consumes 90% of the morphine.
And how much pain does it actually relieve?
Pain at rest is associated with depression scores in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, and is associated with stress in patients with fibromyalgia, a Perth study has found.