Editor’s Note: Dr. David Nagel is a contributor to the National Pain Report and has written a book that is due out in early July. It’s an important read for the chronic pain community. Here’s what some are saying about it. We’ll have an interview with Dr. Nagel about why he wrote the book.
Taking a sociological perspective, Dr. David Nagel looks at how we as a culture treat those who suffer from chronic pain and considers it a social problem. Undertreated pain and its social causes and ramifications is a cultural issue. As opiate use in treating pain and the merits of cannabis are debated, Needless Suffering: How Society Fails Those with Chronic Pain changes how we view chronic pain sufferers and how we treat them.
Nagel describes a dysfunctional health care system that naively believes it can effectively treat pain while ignoring those with expertise in this field and blaming patients who “refuse” to get well. Pain is a complex phenomenon and our ability to treat it is limited because we do not have a cure for pain, but we can work to minimize it. “When patients do not get better, rather than admit our limitations, we often blame them, attributing their pain to some character flaw,” says Nagel. “We ostracize these patients and challenge their integrity, aggravating an already challenging problem.”
Complete with concrete policy proposals and reforms to create more effective and compassionate pain care, this book is designed for pain patients and their families, healthcare providers, legislators and other public policymakers, judges, personal injury and other attorneys, insurers, government regulators, law enforcement personnel, and health care businesspeople.
“This book is a must-read because David Nagel remembers why he went to medical school. The United States has a broken pain treatment infrastructure that has patients and health-care providers in turmoil. Dr. Nagel has a unique understanding of both the problem and the solution.”
—Ed Coghlan, editor, National Pain Report
“Needless Suffering is a remarkable book that has the potential to change the way we talk about pain in America. Dr. Nagel unveils the many unspoken truths about a flawed health-care system that imprisons chronic pain patients for life. This book should be mandatory reading by health-care regulators, lawmakers, and anyone who wants to remove the stigma of the most prevalent medical problem in America: chronic pain.”
—Lynn R. Webster, MD, former president of the American Academy of Pain Medicine and author of The Painful Truth
“David Nagel has written a refreshingly honest account of his experience treating his patients’ pain within the larger context of the health-care system, the legal system, disability and insurance, the regulatory environment, and the business of health-care from his unique perspective as a pain physician . . . David Nagel’s compassion and sincere desire to alleviate human suffering will leave a lasting impression on his readers.”
—Cindy Steinberg, National Director of Policy and Advocacy, U.S. Pain Foundation
- DAVID NAGEL specializes in physical medicine, rehabilitation, and pain management in New Hampshire. He is a member of the Pain Alliance to Initiate a National Strategy (PAINS) and serves as New Hampshire representative to the American Academy of Pain Medicine. He lives in Gilmanton, New Hampshire.
Available from your favorite bookseller, or order from University Press of New England: http://www.upne.com/1611689624.html