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Recognition of the importance of neuropathic pain epidemiology 

Recognition of the importance of neuropathic pain epidemiology
Chapter:
Recognition of the importance of neuropathic pain epidemiology
Author(s):

Matthew Brown

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198834359.003.0071
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date: 25 February 2020

The landmark paper discussed in this chapter is ‘Prevalence of chronic pain with neuropathic characteristics in the general population’, published by Bouhassira and Lantéri-Minet in 2008. Understanding the extent to which a specific condition affects a population is of great importance, for two main reasons. First, robust epidemiological data influences relevant legislators and policymaking, leading to improvements in the allocation of scarce healthcare resources. Second, epidemiology studies alert clinicians and academics to deficiencies and oversights in current treatment. For decades, chronic pain resided in a twilight world, under-recognized and under-resourced, while patients suffered. Papers such as this pioneering work by Bouhassira and Lantéri-Minet started to turn the tide with respect to chronic pain’s profile in the pathological pecking order. It is important because it demonstrated in unarguable fashion the degree to which chronic neuropathic pain blights the lives of a significant proportion of the population.

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