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Psychosocial and cultural aspects of pain. gender and identity issues of pain

Vasiliki Tsirtsiridou, Georgia Vassilopoulou

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

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Pages: 3-14


Recording of pain starts simultaneously with recording of history. This experience is based on cultural and social factors. These determine the perception and expression of pain, seeking medical assistance and receptivity to treatment.
The aim of the present study was to review the literature about the psychosocial and cultural aspects of pain.

Method and material: A review of the research about the psychosocial and cultural aspects of pain was done, using the electronic data bases and mainly pub-med.
Results: The studies show differences in pain experience among different ethnicities and among individuals within the same ethnic group too. Pain is considered to be a threat for the well- being ofthe individual and for normal ageing procedure. It leads to a feeling of ‘trapped self’ of personalityand social isolation. The pain has psychological parameters as interrupts cognitive or other functions performed by the individual at the time of application of painful stimulus, while it interferes in a person's life if it becomes chronic. Some painful syndromes prefer women while women seem to be more sensitive to pain. Perhaps this is related to hormonal factors, differences in anatomy, opioid receptors but also to psychological and social factors.

Conclusions: Τhe perception of pain is subjective and multifactorial as well as the effects of chronic pain syndromes in humans. Research to find the causes of this complexity is long and exhaustive.

However, duty of health professionals is their constant effort for the relief of the patient's pain.

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