Decisions, Decisions

Every intervention for pain may carry some risks and benefits. They key in deciding whether to try some new therapy is having knowledge of your chances of getting relief vs. your chance of having a bad reaction. Given that there is no such thing as perfect knowledge or certainty, you’ll have to take at least a bit of a chance whenever you try something.

Obviously some treatments are pretty low risk (like Bowen therapy or Reiki) while others are higher (like nerve blocks or surgery). The difficulty with many treatments is a lack of evidence of effectiveness. With low risk treatments you may not get hurt anywhere except your wallet but it would still be nice to lower that particular risk.

There is little or no evidence about much of what passes for pain treatment today. Everybody who offers a particular treatment wants you to pick that one. Some may be very sincere and well meaning and others may be snake oil salesmen.

Without evidence to support a claim it’s hard to decide if it is true. From what I’ve seen, too many decide out of desperation or faith. I don’t have an easy solution for all this but think the best way to decide is to get as much reliable evidence as possible. All of us should avoid believing something just because we desperately want it to be true.