This week on the Major Pain podcast we have a special double episode with Dr. Chris Fowler, a research health scientist with his PHD in clinical psychology. In this wide-ranging discussion, he shares the current understanding of chronic pain as a biopsychosocial condition, affecting not just physical well-being but also social relationships and mental health. He describes pain as an alarm system for the body, categorized as either acute or chronic. For patients dealing with chronic pain, he discusses setting expectations in dealing with the limitations of the medical system.
Dr. Fowler’s current research looks towards the future of pain management, specifically the application of virtual reality programs. This is a promising new form of distraction therapy, in which a patient’s focus is moved away from their body to give temporary relief. He also discusses the shifting attitudes towards chronic pain in the medical field, with growing acceptance for the efficacy of alternative care and the importance of tending to emotional health.