The Anesthesiologist and Pain: A Historical Memoir

  • Daniel B. Carr
  • Michael J. Cousins


Pain has forever troubled humankind. Elucidation of nociceptive mechanisms and pathways, and appreciation of their diversity and adaptability, have been essential to understanding pain. Anesthesiologists have furthered such understanding and treatment, and advanced the appreciation of pain as a public health issue. During the twentieth century, the concepts of post-injury sensitization and hyperalgesia were developed, and the role of humoral mediators recognized. The 1950s saw the emergence of anesthesia departments, facilitating research into acute and chronic pain by specialists whose daily task originated with the elimination of pain during operations.


Anesthesiologist and pain Pain and the anesthesiologist Gate control theory Beecher, Henry Bonica, John Acute pain service history multimodal analgesia 



The authors thank Helen Johnston for administrative assistance during the preparation of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Edmond I Eger, MD 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Program on Pain Research, Education and PolicyTufts University School of MedicineBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Anaesthesia and Pain Management, Royal North Shore HospitalUniversity of SydneySydneyAustralia

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