Show Summary Details
Page of

Three determinants of pain 

Three determinants of pain
Chapter:
Three determinants of pain
Author(s):

Manon Choinière

, and M. Gabriella Pagé

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198834359.003.0008
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE (www.oxfordmedicine.com). © Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 27 October 2021

Building on the foundations laid by the gate control theory, Melzack and Casey theorized in 1968 the existence of three separate, yet related determinants of pain: sensory–discriminative, affective–motivational, and cognitive–evaluative. These determinants have roots in separate neurophysiological pathways that modulate the pain experience. The importance of this paper lies in its theoretical contribution to our understanding of pain. Melzack and Casey’s seminal paper, written almost 50 years ago, is not only still contemporary, as evidenced by the internationally agreed upon definition of chronic pain (the IASP taxonomy) but has also contributed to moving from a biomedical understanding of pain to a biopsychosocial model of evaluating and treating pain. This conceptualization of pain continues to influence the way pain is evaluated and is the foundation of the use of non-pharmacological and non-interventional modalities for the treatment of pain (e.g. psychological techniques), and multidisciplinary approaches to pain treatment.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.