Chronic Pain Patients feel lonely. Only people who have suffered from chronic pain can truly understand this. If you bleed or break a bone, people can see your injury and will relate to it. But chronic pain can’t be seen. No one knows how a chronic pain patient has to fight each moment of life with ongoing pain, fatigue, sleep problems, anxiety, depression, financial and family problems. Chronic pain is an enemy with many faces. One has to fight in many sides of this battle at the same time. IT is difficult to keep a happy face and function as normal looking as possible while one is suffering so much. But the worst of all and the most unpleasant experience is when a chronic pain patient feels nobody believes them. The feeling of loneliness is like a prison with no exit door. In many of chronic pain management programs, group therapy is incorporated as one of modalities. My experience is that the group therapy is one of the most popular parts of the these programs. The reason I found, is not the therapy itself. The reason is that pain patients will see in these groups that they are not alone. 

Loneliness is the most disturbing feeling one can experience. Even in real prisons of all times, the worst punishment is to put someone in solitary confinement. Chronic pain feels exactly like that. The best suggestion I can give is to join groups or organizations that chronic pain patients can get together and share ideas with each other. For example in Canada we have the Canadian Pain Coalition http://www.canadianpaincoalition.ca/ for pain patients to get together. All around the world there are groups like this but we need to inform ourselves and participate. Once pain patients get together they can feel less lonely and start to have a common voice to get their needs met. Get together and suffer less.

Author: Dr. Kevin Rod

Here are some highlights of my practice and experience: I am a Family Physician with focused practice in Chronic Pain. I am the founder and director of Toronto Poly Clinic Multi-disciplinary pain management center. I am a Lecturer with the University of Toronto DFCM as a clinical teacher. I am also a guest course contributor to Harvard Medical School department of Continuing Education. I was humbled by receiving Awards of Excellence from University of Toronto DFCM FMLE in 2013 and the Ontario College of Family Physicians in 2008. My special research interest is in applications of HIFU in chronic pain and neurosurgery. I work on a joint research program with Ryerson University for invention of new medical devices with HIFU applications. I have established community educational organizations for senior's health and education: SENIOLAND, and Community Oriented Health Advisory Network Charitable organization: COHAN.

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