Dec 2 2022
Changing the Way We Think About Chronic Pain
Pain is powerful — and when it becomes chronic, it can be all-consuming. It takes over our minds, saps our energy, and becomes the focus of our existence. And yet, pain is also invisible. We can try to describe it — stabbing, nagging, dull, achy; we can rate it on a number scale from one to 10, or point to a smiley or frowny face to define it, but it's not something we can ever fully communicate. Our pain is ours — to feel, to bear, to live with. Millions of Americans live with chronic pain, and yet it can be a profoundly lonely experience. The individual nature of pain, the mysterious way it often sneaks into our lives, without a definitive source, can make it hard to deal with — and even harder to treat. On this episode, we explore the nature of chronic pain — what causes it, how it affects us, and the ongoing fight to stop it. We talk with physician Haider Warraich, who wants to change the way medicine thinks about pain, people who've spent years trying to treat their pain, and a reporter who's tracking the newest developments in pain medicine.