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The therapy might work, but does it work in the manner you think it does?

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Lorimer Moseley
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Jun 18

PainSci notes

We know that “explaining pain” seems to reduce it, but how? Do we really know what’s going on? “The theory behind explaining pain is that it decreases pain by changing the underlying schema about what pain actually is.” Dr. Moseley methodically applies a validity test to that theory, which it passes with flying colours, meaning that it is a reasonable, working theory about how pain education works (not proof that is does work — a technical but important difference).

For contrast, note that in a follow-up article, he concludes that graded motor imagery does not satisfy the burns test — a nice demonstration of the integrity of his reasoning.

~ Paul Ingraham, PainSci Publisher

Related Content

  1. “A randomized controlled trial of an educational intervention to prevent the chronic pain of whiplash associated disorders following rear-end motor vehicle collisions,” Brison et al, Spine, 2005.
  2. “A Cochrane review of patient education for neck pain,” Haines et al, The Spine Journal, 2009.
  3. “Treatment of neck pain: noninvasive interventions: results of the Bone and Joint Decade 2000-2010 Task Force on Neck Pain and Its Associated Disorders,” Hurwitz et al, Spine (Phila Pa 1976), 2008.
  4. “The Pain Course: A Randomised Controlled Trial Examining an Internet-Delivered Pain Management Program when Provided with Different Levels of Clinician Support,” Dear et al, Pain, 2015.

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