Pub. date: 2004 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952576 | Print ISBN: 9780761923602 | Online ISBN: 9781412952576| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Pain: Psychosocial Aspects
Pain is a ubiquitous experience. Everyone experiences some kind of pain at some point in his or her life. Most common pain we experience is acute and transient in nature. It can be quite unpleasant, yet it does not cause any significant tissue damage or have long-term effects on our health. Such pain generally goes away on its own or with over-the-counter medical aids. However, pain can also represent serious illnesses, or become disabling on its own as with a clinical pain disorder. Pain is one of the most common reasons for seeking medical care, accounting for more than 70 million office visits to physicians each year. Chronic and recurrent episodic pain are among the most common physical problems in the United States, with an estimated 90 million suffering from one or more pain syndromes. Pain is a complex perceptual phenomenon. The International Association for the Study of Pain's (IASP) ...