Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Can physical injury cause depression? – The Chart - CNN.com Blogs
"Until one has experienced the horror of prolonged physical pain, its endless, grinding hours and sense of hopeless eternity, one cannot understand how easy it is to become clinically depressed."
"Scientists have shown that the brain uses the same areas to register both types of pain - essentially treating them as being to a large degree equivalent - which may explain why physical pain so often produces depression and why depression worsens physical pain."
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I do think there's also some amount of misdiagnosis, doctors who "think" that chronic pain is only a symptom of depression, and don't separate them out, nor consider the chicken/egg aspect of whether you're in pain because you're depressed or whether you're depressed because you're in constant pain and nothing relieves that pain.
If you do enough reading on the subject (which many doctors don't), you'll understand that the physical pain caused by depression is a dull ache -- the pain equivalent of a low-grade fever, 99.0 -- so if a patient comes in complaining of screaming pain -- the equivalent of a 104 fever -- there's more to blame than depression and it needs to be investigated.