Back in February, we covered a story about a new app called “Cloudy with a Chance of Pain” that was developed by the University of Manchester with the purpose of collecting mass data on the relationship between weather and pain.
The brainchild of Dr. Will Dixon, the app is a “big citizen science experiment where anyone can explore the data and try and spot patterns and relationships in the data. We’ll gather ideas and theories from everyone to come up the best possible conclusion,” Dr. Dixon stated.
Now, there are some preliminary findings from the mass participation study and they indicate a link between weather conditions – specifically rain and lack of sunshine – and chronic pain.
Daily data inputted from over 9,000 UK participants has been viewed at the halfway stage of the 18-month study. The early results suggest a correlation between the number of sunny days and rainfall levels and changes in pain levels.
The researchers looked at data sets from Leeds, Norwich and London. Across all three cities, as the number of sunny days increased from February to April, the amount of time spent in severe pain decreased. However, the amount of time spent in severe pain increased again in June when the weather was wetter and there were fewer hours of sunshine.
“Once the link is proven, people will have the confidence to plan their activities in accordance with the weather. In addition, understanding how weather influences pain will allow medical researchers to explore new pain interventions and treatments.
“To work out the details of how weather influences pain, we need as many people as possible to participate in the study and track their symptoms on their smartphone”.
“If you are affected by chronic pain, this is your chance to take do something personally – and easily – to lead to a breakthrough in our understanding of pain.”
Does weather seem to impact your chronic pain?