Pain science is not a modality!


As I have pointed out numerous times, pain science is just science about pain; there is no secret “pain science group”, camp or crowd, it’s just people who take a scientific look at the pain experience. It’s health professionals that use the current scientific knowledge about pain to inform and better their treatment and management of people living with pain. It’s health professionals that wish to use a comprehensive scientific perspective on pain as the foundation in their clinical reasoning.

I am also beginning to dislike the term, not because its wrong (it’s not), but because of the misuse of the term, and what it implies for people, its become a bastardized term, and in some ways a label for people with old dogmatic views to have something to attack.

I believe it has become a victim of its own success; health professionals tend to remain tied to dogmatic ways of viewing the world and have therefore erroneously made “pain science” into something you do to a patient, into a treatment modality, something it never was. So pain science has been modified to fit within the old treatment paradigm, that is more often than not non-scientific, and often outright pseudoscientific.

I have talked about this danger (1-2 years ago), that there is in pain science as it increases its popularity. There is a great danger that we use the same uncritical, unscientific thinking patterns and lazy thinking that have characterized physiotherapy and pain management over the past couple of decades, just with this “new” pain science on-top.

People are doing showmanship client presentation, and promoting “pain science”, all within a “fixer” mindset (also called Healer Syndrome), and are still using the outdated ‘operator’ treatment model. The implication of this operator mindset is that the patient is view as a passive recipient in the therapeutic encounter, and the therapists do not view themselves as an interactor, who is interacting with another human being.

This lazy thinking can have a catastrophic effect, because this uncritical and unscientific handling with this new pain paradigm, can directly damage the wealth of scientific knowledge, and the goldmine of knowledge that modern pain science is, all this because people who misuse this new knowledge, try to bring pain science down to their level.

We must be better at selling the updated version of pain management, and replace the old pain management with a new more scientific-based way.

Pain science is just science about pain, nothing more nothing less…