10 April 2019

APLAR interviews: Education *is* medicine

Management Pain

Patients with arthritis who understand contemporary pain science actually experience less pain in the long term, says Lorimer Moseley, a professor of clinical neuroscience at the University of South Australia.

Rheumatology Republic reporter Felicity Nelson caught up with Professor Moseley (pictured above) at APLAR-ARA 2019 in Brisbane this week to chat about this fascinating area of pain science:

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John Quintner, Rheumatologist (retired)
John Quintner, Rheumatologist (retired)
1 year 2 months ago

Lorimer Moseley’s response to the question “What is pain?” – “pain is a protective feeling that is generated when the brain thinks protective action is going to be a good thing to do” – perpetuates what might be called the “homuncular theory of pain”. To the best of our knowledge, there is no little man residing in the brain and directing operations.

Attributing properties to the brain when they are those of the whole person constitutes a serious logical flaw in his argument. Brains do not know anything and cannot make decisions.