Cutting Edge Psychology

Will medical research ever join the dots?

Posted on May 3, 2013 at 6:55 PM

More evidence of psychological factors (stress and trauma following car accidents and sexual assaults) flowing on to chronic pain. Unfortunately, the authors of the study view this connection as a mystery, and as such dont know what to do to help people with the chronic pain which follows the traumatic incidences. This is simply a reflection of the short comings of a bio-mechanical way way of making sense of the human mind/body organism. If these medical researchers asked their depth-psychology colleagues how to make sense of the obvious connection between psychological trauma and chronic pain, they would get some informative answers, as well as methods for helping people. There is a tendency in medical science to see all the relevant factors, as does this research, but fail to join the dots to form a coherent picture.

The other interesting issue raised by this research is the role of genes in the experience of chronic pain. Research in epigenetics reveals that certain genes can be 'swiched on' by experience. It is well established that those most susceptible to adult PTSD from a traumatic event are likely to have been traumatised in their childhood as well. They are also more likely to experience chronic pain. So, i suspect this points to a role for childhood/adolescent trauma in switching on the relevant genes which the below reported research discusses; and also makes the people more likely to experience chronic pain following a traumatic event. We certainly are biological and psychological beings.

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