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Expecting pain

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
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Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

Mike Thacker:

What I am proposing is a predictive processing model of pain … [in which] each level of the system is predicting what is happening at the level below, receiving information from it and using that information to update its predictions.

Simply put, what we expect to hurt is a major factor in what actually does. A predictive model for pain processing echoes how other perception works. For instance, vision is predictive: we don’t so much “take it all in” as we “see what we expect to see, with some spot checks for accuracy and consistency.”

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