From fear to safety: a roadmap to recovery from musculoskeletal pain

Review written by Dr Sandy Hilton info

Key Points

  1. Clinicians and patients demonstrate an implicit bias of the vulnerability of the body as a cause of pain.
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BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

Chronic musculoskeletal pain continues to be a global burden and exponential growth is expected despite years of effort to treat pain (1). We need to update treatment choices, acknowledging that each person’s pain experience is influenced by a combination of factors including their physical and medical history, lifestyle, culture, sensory experiences, psychological and social factors, sex, age and social determinants of health.

The authors of this paper discussed the protective function of pain and the altered movement and beliefs that can accompany the loss of a sense of safety with movement or sensation. This paper presented an adaptable framework of using Cognitive Functional Therapy (CFT) to decrease fear and promote a sense of safety as a tool to aid recovery. Recovery was defined as a person developing control over pain, having confident engagement with valued activities, and improving their quality of life (2).

Chronic musculoskeletal pain continues to be a global burden and exponential growth is expected despite years of effort to treat pain.
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While there is no one protocol to follow, solid principles can be applied in cooperation with the person to establish a meaningful and measurable path to recovery.

THE ROADMAP TO RECOVERY:

The key sections of this framework were:

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