And what doesn’t work, and why? PainScience.com reviews your treatment options for many common painful problems, and explains the nature of the pain beast with hundreds of articles and several particularly huge self-help guides. The site is written mainly for patients, but it’s also heavily referenced for health care pros. And I serve up the science of pain, injury, and rehab with a little sass — I try to have fun taking the subject seriously. Read more about PainScience.com.
Paul Ingraham, PainScience publisher
IT band syndrome dominates the side of the knee. Patellofemoral pain is more variable, but usually more in front.
Placebo is fascinating, but its “power” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. There is, however, an awful lot of ideologically motivated hype about placebo!
A little bit of inflammation spread all over the place is one possible culprit in chronic pain.
Supposedly fascia can get tight & needs to be “released,” but key examples of research either fail to support fascial therapy or even undermine it. Is it just a fad?
The cause of sore spots in muscles is mysterious & controversial. Are muscle “knots” basically micro-cramps? Delve into the science.
What hurts? Common painful problems and injuries
The main painful topics on PainScience are stubborn problems like trigger points (poorly named, but incredibly common, and often confused with muscle strain), low back pain (of course), common overuse injuries like iliotibial band syndrome, and stranger musculoskeletal glitches like frozen shoulder. Plus dozens more!
And what works? Pain treatments
Review of treatment methods (with plenty of debunking) is a major theme on PainScience.com: popular DIY options like self-massage, strength training, ice or heat, or the bizarrely controversial Epsom salts. I also review major therapy methods like massage or chiropractic, and gadgets like ultrasound and transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS).
Yes, but why does it hurt? The nature of the beast
Pain “demands an explanation,” wrote poet Ann Carson, but pain is weird. It can be a huge help to understand things like the types of pain, or how insomnia makes pain so much worse, or the role of chronic low-grade inflammation. On the other hand, there are also many over-rated causes of pain like misalignment and poor posture.
The microblog: pain science news & nuggets
I never stop updating and improving PainScience.com articles and books, hundreds of them, but also blog as I work. The blog is basically the “highlights” section of the site: mostly short posts about the niftiest ideas I’ve come across.
- Nov 12: What if chronic pain is a feature, not a bug?
- Nov 9: The myth of the extremely effective therapist
- Nov 9: Neurosis supplier
- Nov 6: The Strength Athlete interview
- Nov 6: True muscle memory
- + 795 more posts …
Recent site updates
A steady stream of content improvements and corrections are all logged, like on Wikipedia:
- Nov 12: spinal nerves and organ health +Science update — Discussed acute effects of SMT on the parasympathetic nervous system, and cited Picchiottino et al on the lack of clinically significant effects.
Organ Health Does Not Depend on Spinal Nerves!
- Nov 12: trigger points +Expanded, other causes of chronic widespread pain — Added two more sub-topics: psychological amplification and true psychosomatic pain.
Trigger Points & Myofascial Pain Syndrome
- Nov 12: trigger points +Expanded, other causes of regional pain — Added three sub-topics: specific pain system dysfunction, spatial summation, and claudication.
Trigger Points & Myofascial Pain Syndrome
- Nov 12: headaches +Science update, subluxation chapter — Added references to support “arthritis isn’t wear-and-tear.” Substantial additional editing and clarifications throughout the chapter.
Complete Guide to Headaches
- Nov 6: patellofemoral syndrome +Expansion — Previously this chapter was just about massage in general and foam rolling in particular. I’ve widened the scope to address the underlying assumption that there’s a need to “loosen” the quads, and now cover both stretch and massage.
Save Yourself from Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome!
- + many more
You’ve got a lot of reading to do! Sorry it’s all here on the computer …
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