Letters Response

Barry Miller replies to Des Spence

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c3011 (Published 09 June 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c3011
  1. Barry Miller, consultant in pain medicine and anaesthesia1
  1. 1Royal Bolton Hospital
  1. dr2bmiller{at}yahoo.co.uk

    I suspect that I am not alone in being concerned about the opinions of Dr Des Spence in his recent article revisiting pain and its treatment.1 2

    I take issue with six of his most recent assertions.1

    (1) 20% of the population experiences chronic pain, but this defies common sense

    This figure is well recognised—for example, a recent report claimed 19% on the basis of interviews with 46 000 people across Europe.3

    The standard definition is a pain occurring more than twice a week for more than 6 months and of a severity of more than 5/10. It is a point prevalence, and will include people whose duration of pain is limited, but it clearly describes an …

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