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The phenomenon of medically unexplained chronic pain

Lars-Petter Granan


This article begins by defining what medically unexplained pain is and if the content of this terminology is dependent on the prevailing medical framework. It will then proceed to discuss various treatment options and what sort of clinical benefit has been documented from them. In addition, the paper will focus on how we might reconsider the premises and consequences of an altered framework to develop individualized and targeted treatment modalities. This shift in conceptualization of medically unexplained pain is founded on the basics of psychology (i.e., the study of behaviour and mind, not the clinical aspect of it), neuroscience and the theory of evolution. The paper is advanced as a starting point for a fruitful discussion on how to encounter with persons with a longstanding pain condition and what the next steps for clinicians, the afflicted, the next of kin, Society and researchers ought to be.


Causation, human evolution, medically unexplained pain, medically unexplained symptoms, neuroplasticity, person-centered healthcare, personhood, taxonomy, terminology

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