What is chronic pain? 

Most of the time, pain serves us well in that it signals to us that damage has happened or is about to happen. It helps us to protect ourselves from further injury and take care of our bodies. But this system can set off alarms when there is no actual disease or injury.

It’s understandably frustrating when pain is real yet tests and investigations to identify damage come back negative or don’t give a clear explanation about the pain. People may feel that they are not being believed, that better tests and treatments have not been carried out, or that their pain is not being taken seriously.

Neuroscience research can explain what has happened to the nervous system. The nervous system is oversensitive and continues to behave as though there is ongoing disease or injury, so the person still experiences pain.

Pain is a body-mind phenomenon, and thoughts and feelings can modify pain experiences in profound ways. Thoughts and feelings can also influence the choices that you make, e.g. how you approach daily activities, or what you do during a flare-up. These choices will in turn influence your pain experiences.

Which type of pain?
The research team
Managing chronic pain
Contact the clinical trials team