Frida Kahlo: Portrait of Chronic Pain

By |2018-06-09T11:31:59+10:00June 9th, 2018|Learn, Professional Resources, Read|

The Mexican artist Frida Kahlo (1907–1954) is one of the most celebrated artists of the 20th century. Although famous for her colorful self-portraits and associations with celebrities Diego Rivera and Leon Trotsky, less known is the fact that she had lifelong chronic pain. Frida Kahlo developed poliomyelitis at age 6 years, was in a horrific trolley car accident in her teens, and would eventually endure numerous failed spinal surgeries and, ultimately, limb amputation. She endured several physical, emotional, and psychological traumas in her lifetime, yet through her art, she was able to transcend a life of pain and disability. Of her work, her self-portraits are conspicuous in their capacity to convey her life experience, much of which was imbued with chronic pain. Signs and symptoms of chronic neuropathic pain and central sensitization of nociceptive pathways are evident when analyzing her paintings and medical history. This article uses a narrative approach to describe how events in the life of this artist contributed to her chronic pain. The purpose of this article is to discuss Frida Kahlo's medical history and her art from a modern pain sciences perspective, and perhaps to increase our understanding of the pain experience from the patient's perspective.

Trust me, I’m a patient: pain education for professionals from a lay perspective

By |2017-12-11T09:19:31+11:00November 1st, 2017|Learn, Professional Resources|

Unfortunately, it is all too common for the professional not to listen to the patient and not to believe in their pain. The focus on the ‘relief of suffering’ has almost got lost in modern medicine’s search for diagnosis and cure. It is hard enough to be coping with pain, but terrifying not to be believed when one goes for help. It should not take months of suffering and inadequate (or no) pain relief before a patient finally gets to a pain clinic.

Resources for Treating Chronic Pain by the Pain Specialists Australia (PSA) …MY pain team!

By |2019-08-26T17:53:09+10:00July 11th, 2016|Learn, Professional Resources, Read, Tips|

Forgive my bossiness but this post comes from a desperate experience that I lived for 4.5 years. That’s a long time for someone with increasing chronic pain levels and not much hope. [...]

A new DVD resource, Healing the Pain ‘Down There’: A Guide for Females with Persistent Genital and Sexual Pain

By |2017-12-11T16:28:35+11:00September 8th, 2015|Learn, Professional Resources|

There have been many times during my years of chronic pain where I wondered, ‘Why didn’t I know that?’. Usually, the information is quite basic and I feel as though I’ve been [...]

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