Pain and the Conscious Brain brings together more than 30 international leaders from multiple fields to link the complex concept of pain to the equally complex notion of consciousness. Offering a clear, cutting-edge understanding of the brain mechanisms that generate the conscious experience of pain, this book scientifically addresses the difficult and chronic pains that often have no known physical cause and can defy comprehension in terms of current pain theories. Numerous tables, full-color figures, and up-to-date references highlight expert coverage of today’s gradual paradigm shift from peripheral receptors to the intricacy of the brain and the experience of the self.
Beginning with a solid introduction to consciousness and pain, this unique volume covers neurobiological aspects of the pain experience during psycho-physiological changes of the conscious state, pain processing in psychiatric and neurological disorders affecting consciousness, specific clinical populations, and the future of pain and consciousness research. Key topics include cortical imaging of pain in humans • pain perception during sleep • pharmacologic approaches to pain and consciousness using functional neuroimaging • hypnosis • mindfulness and meditation • pain and consciousness in infants • recognizing pain in dementia • the role of vision in pain perception • robot pain • and more.