Dr Stuart Derbyshire - Predictor Podcast (Ep38) - Creating pain in the lab: research into chronic functional pain

May 30, 2013, 03:52 PM

Andy talks to Dr Stuart Derbyshire, Director of Pain Imaging at the University of Birmingham and a Reader in Psychology, about his research into functional pain. Anywhere between 5% and 20% of the population has a chronic functional pain - disorders where there’s no obvious underlying cause for the person’s pain - which can be extremely devastating to quality of life and a cause of constant discomfort. As a pressing clinical problem, Stuart talks about the fascinating research he undertakes in his lab to try and model the core features of functional pain, which involves taking people who don’t have pain and then seeing if he can make them experience pain without a traditional noxious stimulus. Adhering to the motto 'touching is cheating', Stuart attempts to create pain using a variety of weird and wonderful techniques, including hypnosis, photos of people with injuries, and even a rubber arm illusion, where he gives people a fake limb and then stabs it! (Oh, and if Stuart looks familiar, he was also the man behind the ice bath test in the assassin episode of 'Derren Brown: The Experiments'.)

Download a transcript of this podcast here: http://bit.ly/1gtAXfh