|About the Book|
In Dr. Scott Fishman we have a model of compassion in a technological setting. . . .I feel rare confidence as I read his advice.--Thomas Moore, from the ForewordFor centuries, pain has been our most formidable and elusive adversary. But astounding breakthroughs in pain medicine have turned the tide in the age-old battle against suffering. In this comprehensive book, eminent pain specialist Scott Fishman, M.D., takes us to the front lines of this war, arming readers with the information--and inspiration--they need to understand and manage the full spectrum of pain: from chronic back pain to the acute discomfort of postsurgical pain, from migraines and arthritis to the suffering of terminal illness.As a physician and psychiatrist--and as the chief of a leading pain center--Dr. Fishman has a rare perspective on suffering. He understands that beyond the physical anguish, chronic pain isolates its victims while it devastates families, relationships, and careers. Too often, pain sufferers must do battle against a medical culture that is largely ill-prepared to cope with their needs. And yet, as Dr. Fishman reports, breakthroughs in neuroscience, pharmacology, and mind-body therapies have given doctors and their patients the upper hand.Through the personal journeys of real patients, we learn about the anatomy of pain and explore its pathways through the body and mind. We explore the full range of pain-fighting techniques that get results, from surgical nerve blocks to acupuncture, from common analgesics to opioids, from psychiatric drugs to cognitive behavioral therapies. As Dr. Fishman has learned from his unique clinical experience, the best chance of defeating this enemy is an integrative arsenal of traditional and alternative weapons.Writing with eloquence and compassion, Dr. Fishman offers an insiders view of how the secret language of pain is decoded and disarmed. After reading this book he hopes that you will be able to act as your own best advocate throughout the healthcare system. Dr. Fishman believes that the war on pain demands a mix of combat and diplomacy, of strategy and tactics, of carefully choosing ones battles and knowing how to step out of the crossfire. In the end, we all fight our own war on pain. And this book goes a long way toward fortifying each of us in the struggle.