Interpretations and Therapies of Pain during Modern and Ancient Age

Ferdinando Di Orio, Francesco Masedu


The problem of pain has always been a cornerstone in reflections of mankind, privileged place to endeavour a comprehensive understanding of his own meaning. So we are not surprised realising how many thinkers identified the problem of pain with the essential issue in order to characterise man. Pain has been and is, despite its widespread removal in modern western cultures, both a constructive and destructive strength of our deeper sense. History of pain has been mainly, but not only, history against pain, struggle with this, prima facie, contradictory aspect of human condition. We'll trace out a path, spanning many centuries, looking for strategies to cope with physical pain. This choice is justified by the amount of therapeutic achievements con­cerned the control of pain during the 19th century compared with those of the preceding ages. This division underlines the progress achieved in this field during the last two centuries and makes clear the difficulties encountered by Medicine and allied sciences in getting operative scientific credit.

In the background there are the problems of palliative cares, euthanasia, and the hope to approach death with dignity.

Key words: Pain Semeiotics - Therapy

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