The future belongs to the Third Medicine—the one which unites the Contemporary Western and the Traditional Eastern medicines. This integration begins in the pain treatment clinics.

Proprietary psycho-holographic 3d Model of Pain

There is hardly a person who has never experienced pain – in this sense we all know what it is. From a scientific point of view, though, pain is a very complex matter and it might sound surprising but doctors in general (including the professors teaching medicine!) do not know its’ modern definition. And the definition is:

“The pain is a subjective sensory and emotional experience that requires the presence of consciousness to permit recognition of a stimulus as unpleasant.”—24 August 2005, NewScientist.com news service. Original review: Science & Consciousness, September 3, 2005

Does this definition offer some practical meaning about analgesia’s methods? Let us analyse this a little further:

According to the above Pain has 3 components: sensor stimulation, emotional aspect accompanied by our cognitive evaluation. In order to imagine this better we could use the following 3D model. To start with, look at the corner of your room. The length, width and height connect in one perpendicular plane:

Pain Frames without Titles

The space defined by those three (along with all the other objects) is the one you are in. Obviously you possess the same three dimensions yourself. All this is very well known. It is far more complicated to imagine what will happen if in one way or another we remove one of these dimensions: this same space will lose its volume and will reduce itself to being flat. Therefore the space – along with us in it – shall disappear! All that shall be left of us is a still, incomplete projection on a flat surface – quite similar to a photo.

Now look at the graphics at the author’s model:

Pain Frame with Titles

Sensitivity lies on the floor, emotions on the one and cognition on the other wall. It is in this space that pain occurs, with the volume and intensity stemming from its three dimensions.

Pain Frames with Sensibility Highlighted

The increase of the emotions or the stimulus and of its increasing negative evaluation by the consciousness increases the pain. And vice versa, of course.

In order to be accurate, each and every theoretical construct must be able to withstand the test of various phenomenon known to practice. Our proposed theoretical model, for example, offers explanation to the masochistic appreciation of painful experiences -– strong stimulus, strong emotional response, but combined with a positive cognitive evaluation! Or combined with a pleasant emotion, if not with a positive cognitive evaluation -– the result is still the same. On another hand this same model allows us to look at the phantom pains as a result of psycho-somatization, under which a combination of emotions and evaluation colored memories is projected upon the body as a sensitive irritation/stimulus. In result a seemingly impossible, but incredible persistent pain occurs within the above mentioned space, but which pain is now projected on the missing part of the body.

Pain Frames Projection

The same model could be successfully applied in analyzing a variety of pain occurring cases, but most importantly it offers a definition and a theoretical concept for treating pain – to destroy its’ existing space! This can happen by blocking one of its three existing dimensions. Therefore pain can be eliminated through one of the following means:

  • Through decreasing the level of sensitivity – i.e., through local anesthetics, peripheral nerve blocks, spinal blocks, etc.;
  • Through suppressing the emotions (i.e., sedation) with tranquilizers or an narcotic;
  • Through denying the consciousness its’ ability to give negative evaluations – general anesthesia, hypnoses, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, etc.

The model shows why narcotic analgesics can simultaneously affect emotions and cognition without affecting sensitivity. In practice it explains which of the three mentioned dimensions of pain does each and every pain-relief remedy affect. As is well known, the center of all three dimensions is the thalamus and its’ damage induces an incontrollable pain -– the implosion or shrinking of its’ space is even theoretically impossible.

Modern anesthesiology is capable of perfectly dealing with these issues in the cases of acute traumas, surgical interventions, post-operative period and/or other cases of acute pain. (After all anesthesia means desensitization). Unfortunately, though, anesthesiology of chronic pain is only now starting. It is called pain management and its’ specialists must be aware of the studied phenomena as much as possible, in order to successfully manage it.

Paper presented at the III International Conference of the Bulgarian Association for Study and Treatment of Pain, Borovets, Bulgaria, June, 2006.

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I enjoyed your scholarly discussion.

от Leslie Radentz, MD
1.05.11

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