Enduring chronic pain: "Nobody should have to suffer when treatments are available" (press release)

Saturday, August 06, 2005
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of (See all articles...)
Tags: health news, Natural News, nutrition

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Simone Orton – once a runner, baseball player and figure skater – found herself curled up in a fetal position during a bout of agony so powerful, she wondered if she would ever live a pain-free and active life again

Her muscles were twitching from head to toe. The woman who prided herself on not letting anyone know the extent of her pain was vomiting repeatedly and moaning. Her terrified husband rushed her to the emergency room.

Orton had lived with chronic pain since an accident at age 12 that crushed two of her vertebrae. Many doctors told her that nothing serious was wrong with her in the years that followed. Some doctors suggested that the problem was all in her head. She persisted, until a rheumatologist finally diagnosed her with a kind of arthritis known as ankylosing spondylitis, which caused her spine to fuse together and to be completely solid.

Even after the diagnosis, however, Orton continued to suffer, often in silence. But this trip to the hospital altered everything. The peak of her pain was so high that she thought she might die. Doctors and nurses struggled to get her pain under control.

And on day six of her nine-day hospital stay, Orton, now 42, had a fateful meeting with Carmen R. Green, M.D., associate professor in the U-M Medical School's Department of Anesthesiology and pain specialist at the U-M Health System's Center for Interventional Pain Medicine.

Green “walked in and took over,” Orton recalls. “At that point she didn't feel I was adequately being taken care of, pain-wise.”

Green developed a pain-management plan for Orton that included regular fine-tunings of her pain medications, as well as ways to deal with the mental and social burdens associated with living with chronic pain.

Far too many people suffer from chronic pain without receiving adequate treatment, Green says. “Pain is a thief in the night; it steals people's livelihood,” she says. “Pain is under-treated. It really is a public health crisis. If we do not do something about the pain epidemic, it's going to significantly impact this society.”

Pain also is an issue that typically receives varying amounts of attention, depending on a patient's demographics, she says.

“The pain complaints of certain populations, including the elderly, minorities and women, do not receive the same attention as those of, in general, Caucasian men,” Green says. “Our research at U-M is focused on how age, race and gender influence the pain experience. We also look at how those factors influence health care providers' decision-making as it relates to pain.”

One-fifth to one-third of Americans live with pain, Green says. This number is increasing rapidly due to high rates of obesity and inactivity, improvements in medicine and technology that allow people to live longer, and other societal changes.

For instance, someone who would have died from a car accident or cancer 20 years ago now may be able to live a long life. “Despite the fact that we can save and prolong their lives, we now may end up treating them for chronic pain problems,” Green says.

But treatments are available, including medications – ranging from over-the-counter medicine to prescription-only opioid analgesics – as well as psychological counseling for the depression and anxiety that often accompany chronic pain, relaxation training, physical therapy to improve a person's function and mobility, and more. In addition, many types of nerve blocks are available to treat many painful conditions.

“We have a lot of things in our tool box,” Green says. “Nobody should have to suffer from pain when so many treatments are available.”

And how is Simone Orton doing? The woman who once needed a wheelchair when her pain and arthritis were at their most debilitating is back on her feet, continuing with an active lifestyle and in control of her pain.

“I'm doing so well that at my last visit with Dr. Green, she said she didn't need to see me for three months,” Orton says. “It felt like a graduation.”

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About the author:Mike Adams (aka the "Health Ranger") is the founding editor of, the internet's No. 1 natural health news website, now reaching 7 million unique readers a month.

In late 2013, Adams launched the Natural News Forensic Food Lab, where he conducts atomic spectroscopy research into food contaminants using high-end ICP-MS instrumentation. With this research, Adams has made numerous food safety breakthroughs such as revealing rice protein products imported from Asia to be contaminated with toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium and tungsten. Adams was the first food science researcher to document high levels of tungsten in superfoods. He also discovered over 11 ppm lead in imported mangosteen powder, and led an industry-wide voluntary agreement to limit heavy metals in rice protein products to low levels by July 1, 2015.

In addition to his lab work, Adams is also the (non-paid) executive director of the non-profit Consumer Wellness Center (CWC), an organization that redirects 100% of its donations receipts to grant programs that teach children and women how to grow their own food or vastly improve their nutrition. Click here to see some of the CWC success stories.

With a background in science and software technology, Adams is the original founder of the email newsletter technology company known as Arial Software. Using his technical experience combined with his love for natural health, Adams developed and deployed the content management system currently driving He also engineered the high-level statistical algorithms that power, a massive research resource now featuring over 10 million scientific studies.

Adams is well known for his incredibly popular consumer activism video blowing the lid on fake blueberries used throughout the food supply. He has also exposed "strange fibers" found in Chicken McNuggets, fake academic credentials of so-called health "gurus," dangerous "detox" products imported as battery acid and sold for oral consumption, fake acai berry scams, the California raw milk raids, the vaccine research fraud revealed by industry whistleblowers and many other topics.

Adams has also helped defend the rights of home gardeners and protect the medical freedom rights of parents. Adams is widely recognized to have made a remarkable global impact on issues like GMOs, vaccines, nutrition therapies, human consciousness.

In addition to his activism, Adams is an accomplished musician who has released ten popular songs covering a variety of activism topics.

Click here to read a more detailed bio on Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, at

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