The following video explores just how damaging it can be for ‘regulators’ to ‘regulate’ things they have no personal stake in – like the pain and suffering of another human being.
Pain is a uniquely individual experience – no two people experience the same injury or ‘pain’ in exactly the same way. The way our society deals with individuals who are in the process of experiencing pain is insulting and actively counter-productive.
OK – I may be off on a rant again – if you’d like, skip to the video.
But pain is something I know quite a bit about, having been on the receiving end of more and more intense pain than most of the people I know. And medical personnel have uniquely failed to comprehend any of it…
For example: when you tell medical personnel (mp) that you are experiencing pain, they will typically ask you: “On a scale from 1 to 10 (or, 1-5 – or something similar), how bad is the pain?”
Excuse me, but a person who had never experienced more than a hangnail or a papercut will not be using the same scale as someone who had suffered sufficient level of pain so as to loose consciousness from the pain alone. So, that question is irrelevant at best, downright harmful in reality.
Yet that is the starting point for our medical ‘science’….
While I am ranting – I have two children. As such, I have been through labour twice. The first time, I had an epidural; the second time there was a danger of an emergency C-section, so I got what is called a ‘saddle-block‘. ( Both are a form of pain relief – one through delivering an analgesic to the spine, so that everything below is numbed, the other blocks the neural transmissions of pain below the solar plexus so that an emergency surgery can be performed without being felt – or so it had been explained to me. Different methods, different medications – one is a continuous dose, the other is one-time-lasts-for-few-hours type thing.)
In both cases, I was able to tell the mp exactly what stage I was in, and was not believed because, according to them, I had no way to feel things through the procedure,. Both times I was right – of course, or I would not be writing about it here. Especially the second delivery was surprising to the mps: I had only just entered labour when the baby went into distress and I got wheeled into the operating room where they were already scrubbing for the emergency C-section. Well, as the panic took over my body, it went into ‘hyper mode’ and even before they secured the gurney, I was ready to deliver. They did not believe me. I insisted they check. The baby came….and it was faster than had they done the C-section!
They stood around shaking their heads, wondering how I could possibly have felt it? But, I did….. (Mind you, the process was so fast, I dislocated a hip in the process, but that is a small price to pay for preventing oxygen deprivation to my baby!)
Why am I ranting on about this?
Simply to demonstrate that pain is not perceived the same way by different people. Even things as well known and understood such as local anaesthesia will be perceived by some people differently than most.
Even the same ‘thing’ – like childbirth – can differ: not just from woman to woman, but from delivery to delivery. My sister-in-law has 4 children – and says that the pain she experienced during her 4th delivery was much stronger and very, very different from the pain she experienced with her first 3 children. So, even if mps ask about a pain scale where 0 is no pain and 5 is childbirth pain – guess what, there is no common top to the scale!
So, if even well understood meds like local anaesthesia are not accurately known by our medical people, how about a new and quickly evolving field, such as chronic pain management?!?!?
And what happens when regulators try to get their proverbial two cents in?
What happens when politics tries to inject itself into the cutting edge of medical research?
Here is one such story: