Chronic pain is something that is experienced by an estimated 100 million people in the United States. Increasingly, the medical community, businesses, and society as a whole are recognizing its adverse effects not just on the sufferers, but on health care costs, lost wages, and business productivity.
Chronic pain is defined as mild to severe pain that has lasted for more than three to six months. It may stem from a variety of causes, including traumatic injury, medical treatments or surgery, aging, and underlying medical conditions. In some cases, the cause cannot be identified. One of the leading causes is spinal cord trauma.
The effects of chronic pain on sufferers are substantial and may include the following:
• inability to work;
• social isolation;
• anxiety, distress, depression, or other mental disturbances;
• chronic fatigue;
• sleeplessness; and
• a weakened immune system.
All of these are significant, but a weakened immune system is particularly noteworthy. Research is showing a strong connection between chronic pain and suppression of the sufferer’s immune system. This can cause a pain sufferer’s overall health to spiral downward. The emotional effects of such pain also contribute to an overall decline.
Neuroscientists are making advances in the study of chronic pain’s effects on the brain. They have found that a key area of the brain affected is that believed to exert control over functions such as cognition, motor skills, and memory. The concentration of reaction to pain in this area is thought to alter functions of the brain that would normally suppress feelings of pain.
Increased understanding of the long-lasting effects of chronic pain means that persons injured by the negligence of others may be due more compensation than traditionally thought. Pain and suffering are common components of an award or settlement in a personal injury case, but arriving at a dollar value for such injury can be difficult. With new scientific evidence of the long-term effects of chronic pain, the amount of compensation may be more easily calculated and may increase the amount of recovery for injury victims.
The San Francisco personal injury attorneys at Alexander Law Group, LLP will work with you to procure all possible monetary compensation after your injury. Our goal is to help our clients receive proper compensation for their pain and suffering. You can reach one of our San Francisco personal injury attorneys at 888.777.1776. Alternatively, you can use our online contact form and we will get back to you promptly.