Detailed guides to painful problems, treatments & more

What’s worse than not having a pain cure?

 •  • 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.

Many readers complain about how I don’t provide answers and solutions to painful problems, “only” skepticism and debunking. (And nuance! Don’t forget the nuance.) But you know what’s even worse than your mysteriously messed up knee? Or back? Or chronic headaches? Or whatever your chronic pain may be.

False hope. False hope is definitely worse than merely not having a cure.

Wasting your time and money is worse. Wasting it on the countless bullshit “treatments” that are expensively, tirelessly marketed to you by gurus, influencers, grifters, and con-men … but even more often by legions of well-meaning but naive healthcare professionals. Pros who are actually suffering from the same false hope as their patients, just from the other side of the equation — hoping they can help, instead of hoping to be helped — based on the same marketing and hype that fools patients.

Let’s wake up (sheeple!) from the mass delusion that there are savvy fixes docs don’t know about. (Or “won’t tell you.” 🙄) Wake up from the hope that the right gadget can accelerate healing. Wake up from faith your next massage therapist can disappear your frozen shoulder with magic hands, like Mr. Miyage.

The only reliable truth is a bummer: chronic pain is extremely messy and tricky to treat, and often just impossible. Don’t make it worse by believing that special people/products can get around that.

PainSci Member Login » Submit your email to unlock member content. If you can’t remember/access your registration email, please contact me. ~ Paul Ingraham, PainSci Publisher