what is pain?

the practical definition of pain – what the patient says hurts! so it is subjective and differs from patient to patient.

also, pain is what the patient describes, not what others think it ought to be

pain can be classified in terms of cause, temporal occurence and pathophysiological basis

temporal classification:

can be acute (short duration, clear onset and sympathetic overactivity) or chronic (personality and lifestyle changes and minimal sympathetic activity)

pathophysiological classification:

nociceptive – stimulation of sensory receptors, travels via normal neural pathways to the brain where it is recognised as pain.

neuropathic – nervous system injury where the nerves react abnormally

psychogenic – evidence of psychopathology and no other basis for pain

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~ by pcl4 on August 17, 2008.

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