Research: PAGE and BEN-ELIYAHU,

Listed in Issue 23

Abstract

PAGE and BEN-ELIYAHU, College of Nursing, Ohio State University, Columbia Ohio USA review (50 references) the evidence that the immune system plays a role in controlling the spread of cancer, and that perioperative pain relief improves immune status and health outcome.

Background

Methodology

Reviewed were research studies and articles pertaining to immunity, immune function, stress and the immune-suppressive nature of pain.

Results

Pain not only results in suffering but is itself a pathogen, capable of facilitating the progression of metastatic disease. Adequate pain relief decreases these risks.

Conclusion

Adequate pain relief is not only a primary concern in caring for people in pain but may also be a physiological necessity, in light of studies revealing the immune-suppressive nature of pain.

References

Page GG and Ben-Eliyahu S. The immune-suppressive nature of pain. Semin Oncol Nurs 13(1): 10-5 Feb 1997.

Comment

All of the above research studies demonstrate the powerful links that exist between the mind, pain, stress and the immune system. We all know that pain, anger and stress can have negative or even destructive effects upon our health; the challenge is to apply what we know to enable us to relax more.

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