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Pain and Suffering Quick Updates

Pain and Suffering Quick Updates

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder worsened by history of sexual trauma

Women with undiagnosed posttraumatic stress disorder frequently go to primary care providers for treatment. The most common cause of PTSD in women is sexual trauma. A person’s vulnerability to develop PSTD is linked to that individual’s history of victimization. Reports estimate that 15%-38% of women experience childhood sexual abuse, 13% to 20% experience adult rape and at least 20% experience battering.

Butterfield, M. and Becker, M. Posttraumatic stress disorder in women: assessment and treatment in primary care, Primary Care: Clinics in Office Practice, Vol. 29, No. 1, March 2002

Blindness is feared

Although any injury is stressful, eye trauma, among non-life threatening injuries, is especially so. Vision loss caused by trauma is usually sudden, dramatic, and can be emotionally wrenching for patients who have taken their vision for granted. According to Gallup polls, blindness is the most feared by Americans of all disabilities, ranking fourth after AIDs, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease as the worst disease or ailment.

Morris, R., Fletcher, D., and Scott, S. Counseling and rehabilitation, Ophthalmology Clinics of North America, Vol. 15, No. 2, June 2002

Why adhesions are painful

Peritoneal (intra-abdominal) adhesions are implicated in the cause of chronic abdominopelvic pain. Many patients are relieved of their symptoms after the adhesions are cut. Adhesions are thought to cause pain indirectly by restricting organ motion, thus stretching and pulling smooth muscles of adjacent organs or the abdominal wall. In this study, nerve fibers were present in all of the peritoneal adhesions that were examined. This study provided the first direct evidence for the presence of sensory nerve fibers in human peritoneal adhesions, suggesting that these structures may be capable of conducting pain after appropriate stimulation.

Sulaiman, H. et al, Presence and distribution of sensory nerve fibers in human peritoneal adhesions, Annuals of Surgery, Vol. 234, No. 2, August 2001

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