Book Bites: A New Way to Tackle Your Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is a complicated and increasingly common problem that affects millions of people around the world. Complicated in how it intervenes in our lives, complicated in its understanding and origin, and complicated in how healthcare has grown to understand and address it.I know that chronic pain sufferers, and those that care for them, are two things if nothing else:

  1. Survivors—living in chronic pain is hard; it takes bravery, courage, and strength that anyone who has not lived it could never understand.
  2. Smart—when the common answers given to a complicated problem like chronic pain are not satisfactory, we learn to ask more questions, to dig deeper, to become our own researchers and advocates.

I am a chronic pain sufferer myself. I have a condition of the spine which causes pain and stiffness in my low back, and which has caused intense pain to radiate down my leg and into my groin. Movement, sleep, activities, and my attitude have all been compromised because of pain.

If you’re suffering with chronic pain, or caring for someone who is, you know how debilitating it can be. The pain is bad enough. What’s worse is the risk of secondary issues, such as opioid addiction, that further limit the ability of sufferers to live a full, vibrant life.

I see so many people who have had their lives robbed by pain—robbed of comfort, robbed of function, productivity, joy, presence, hope, and more. No one likes to be robbed. No one likes to see someone they care about be robbed of a full and thriving life.

I know many chronic pain patients who have become nearly expert at understanding the complexity of their pain in their own search for solutions. They know the drugs, the injections, the therapies, and the approaches that are available because they’ve tried them, or at least researched them. They also know the significant dates and history of how pain came into their lives to rob them. The way that pain blasted down the front door, or the way it crept in silently at night, perhaps on the coattails of a seemingly simple injury, and never left, sticking around and robbing them still.

My intention is to bring understanding, hope, and relief to as many people as possible, because ultimately, that is all that matters. Throwing another quasi-effective therapy into the mix or vocalizing an argument for the sake of argument benefits no one. The solution I advocate is about restoring people back to life—not just reducing pain, but bringing vitality, productivity, and joy fully back to the lives of those that chronic pain seeks to rob.

It is meant for the many clinical professionals who genuinely care about their patients and want to see them live fuller, happier, pain-free, more productive lives. If this describes you, I hope that you will champion the solution and the business case you find presented in this book, and that you will come to see it as valuable and complementary to your work. Indeed, I hope that it allows all of us to more effectively work together at decreasing suffering, improving productivity, and moving towards ever more progressive, safe, and effective therapies.

It is meant for leaders within the medical-industrial complex to enter into the conversation and to be part of the solution that addresses the systemic failings, high costs, and inefficiencies facing our existing global healthcare infrastructure, so that we might deliver better care to those that need it.

It is meant for media and thought leaders throughout the world, so that we can all become champions of innovation to dig deeper and ask the questions to challenge the status quo, resulting in better thinking and a better quality of life for mankind.

I choose to be bold in expressing my view and for making a case for a better solution to chronic pain. Because if I am right—and I have staked my career, reputation, and family’s livelihood on the fact that I am—the solution I present has the potential to help millions of people and the families, friends, and caregivers that surround them.

Chronic pain is complicated. But I don’t believe that it is insuperable. Many people afflicted by chronic pain believe that there is ultimately very little they can do. They may find temporary relief through therapies and drugs, but they will never again be truly pain-free. I believe that it’s possible for most people suffering with chronic pain to radically reduce or even completely eliminate their experience of the symptoms that plague them, enabling them to rediscover their lives.

That’s what drives me to present the information in this book. It is information that has led me toward a new lease on life, and I’ve seen it do the same for countless others who thought they would spend the rest of their lives being robbed of their joy and vitality by chronic pain. I hope it will do the same for you.

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