QuickThing4>how a feedback structure generates a new disease

Elliot Krane: The mystery of chronic pain

Dr. Elliot Krane describes our brain's signals: click on this image for the TED video

Pain is a symptom, right?  Traffic is a symptom.  Hunger is a symptom.  Absenteeism is a symptom.  Of course.

This is true, most of the time, says Dr. Elliot Krane, Chief of Pain Management Services at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Standford University.  In this startling video, Krane tells us that about 10% of the time, pain signals develop entirely new “feedback loops” such that the pain becomes its own disease.

This has made me wonder to what extent this infrequent but quite real phenomenon occurs in other systems –  transportation, nutrition, employment.  To what extent might a symptom become causal?

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