Pain, Healing and Transformation

This interview is with Melanie Thernstrom, author of New Your Times Bestseller – The Pain Chronicles.

Here, we discuss both Melanie’s journey through chronic pain and her experiences with hundreds of chronic pain patients as she researched writing her book.

You’ll discover out what Melanie found to be the most critical factor in the chornic patients that got better – and those that didn’t.

You’ll gain a new understanding of nature of pain itself. Melanie describes how pain has been seen throughout history not just as a negative warning, but also as a powerful tool for transformation, and how this can help you in your journey.

There is a vital role that understanding what chronic pain means plays in the healing process. So finally, we look at mindset and healing, and how these two interact. To listen to the whole recording, just press the play icon below.

Melanie Thernstorm Interview
To download, right click and select ‘save link as.’

Clarifications – Melanie finished teaching at Harvard and Cornell over 10 years ago.

Is there anyone else you’d like me to interview? Click here to make a suggestion….

Leave a Comment:

(8) comments

Leona J Jones November 3, 2010

Hi Jonathon, Wow that interview was fantastic, it has really helped me to gain new understanding of pain. I could really relate to all of what was spoken about, I too just wanted the pain to go away and be fixed, forget the imformation and pain management, the light just went on after 30 years of trying to get answers through many different avenues of treatment and supplements. I totally agree that you cannot seperate mind body soul and spirit, I have always got that part and I believe the word understanding is so important in ones life, relationships, who we are and what makes us tick as well as every aspect of life in general. One can not do without the other Leona.

Lynne November 3, 2010

It was amazing listening to Melanie I have had similar experiences since bargain, plead, pray, go through the 5 stages of grief. Pain is a journey i never thoought I would be taking. Unfortunately, where you live I have found has a profound affect on how you mange your pain. The medical community just wants to write a Rx and have you go away. Or they offer the “miracle” cures you hear about. I totally identify with melanie and her journey. Most informative and hopeful.
Thank you


[…] This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← Is Happiness Infectious? […]

andy March 17, 2011

I have been suffering from chronic upper trapezius pain with trigger points mostly on my shoulders affecting the back of my head.

This has been going on for two years…. I have suffered a lot thinking that it will never go away and that perhaps I have occipital neuralgia…. which I doubt I have as I don’t have nerve throbbing into my head.

the odd things after listening to your interview is that Melanie mentioned that pain becomes stronger only when you allow it to be…. there have been weeks where I am having so much in my mind that the pain becomes very subtle and I can actually feel like a normal person and ignore it….. and I have also gone through weeks where the only thing on my mind is pain and I do nothing but curl and cry wishing for the pain to go away or for me to die so I will never feel it again.

I have not have any treatments as of yet…. thank expensive insurances for that….. gotta love modern society!! hopefully soon I will…. and I will start acupuncture, massage therapy and physical therapy…. also some posture exercises!

lets see how it goes…. I am learning to manage my pain though and I am also learning that certain movements make worst in certain areas… therefore I am teaching my mind to feel it when it’s coming to a certain trigger point so I will correct my posture.

thank you Doctor…. I am learning a lot through you!

Maureen May 23, 2012

I found the interview intersting,i have muscel inbalance mainly in left buttock where i have my problems ,pain specialist says pirfomus muscel is involed,my doctor and my friend who has done scientific reserch of the body years ago ,believe that i had also got a muscel tear ,i told the back specilist i was under at the time and the reply was unless it fully torn wont show up on a mri scan, i did have scan of the lumber spine and sacrum area , but nothing showed up, he was also suspecting l2 nerve root,but he was happy that my mri of my degenerative discs didnt show any further degeneration,but 6 years down the line ,iv still got the pain ,i have had lots of private and nh physo,but i wont give up trying ,my mind does affect my pain no doubt about that,its not easy,im in my 60s ,and also got family comitments to deal with,any suggestions joanthan,.

Atiya Ahsan March 3, 2013

This was a very halpful interview…I found I could relate to this a lot, I’ve had fibromyalgia for a couple of years now….surgery actually did make it worse….having doctors and even your family members doubt you when your pain is not confirmed by any of the tests, and people actually look at you like it all really is in your head, and the worst part of it was living in constant fear of pain, not being able to do anything cuz’ everything I did inevitably resulted in pain. Correct diagnosis, and proper pain “management” really did help. Hot water therapy, massage treatment and pregabalin helped a lot. The most important thing was getting sound, deep, and uninterrupted sleep every night for several hours. A lot of it also had to do with the perception of pain. The sensation would be augmented whenever I was alone or by myslef, whenever I felt down, and even cold and hunger. On the other hand, being around friends and family, using heating pads, being mobile without stressing myself out and eating chocolates alwas made me feel better…! 🙂

Jake March 5, 2013

Melanie has effectively adapted a ACT Therapy type of position. The pain can be completely eliminated if she continues to understand that “people suffer” and that the words associated with thoughts can eventually make the change.

She also effectively lost the “fear” of her pain by moving through PT.

If she decides that the pain can be vanquished, it will be, due to the plasticity of the mind.

Harold October 9, 2013

A little over s year ago I was experiencing a wind down of 3 years of chronic pain from Myyofascial pain syndrome. At its peak severe pain would develop about every 6 hrs day and night. It could be knocked down with alcohol, hot tubs, NSAIDS, or manipulation of the Fascia.
Then I experienced the mifortune of a severe fall which injured my scapula and nearly knocked me out. Relatively severe, relativly continuous pain resulted.

About 3 months later I came down with shingles which continued on into post herpetic neuralgia. Pain varies between shingle like and just straight pain.

In fact treatment seems to not do much regardless of what diagnosis one attempts to consider.

BTW I am 89 and with this mix clobbering me I might not make 90!


Add Your Reply

Leave a Comment: