The Words Matter Podcast with Oliver Thomson

Dr Oliver Thomson talks with Christine Price about her experience of the complexity of her persistent pain for The Words Matter Podcast CauseHealth Series

Show Notes

Welcome to another episode of the Words Matter Podcast. 

We are now up to Chapter 7 of the CauseHealth book, and have entered part 2 of the book where will discuss the clinical application of the of the dispositionalist view of complexity and person-centred care that CauseHealth advocates.
In this CauseHealth Series episode I’m speaking with Christine Price about her Chapter 7, titled The Complexity of Persistent Pain – A Patient’s Perspective (read chapter here).

Christine has experienced neuropathic (nerve) pain, which she has lived with since an injury in 2008. She writes blogs and talks about her experiences of living well with pain, directed at both clinicians and patients. She is a regular presence on twitter, posting resonating content, which check and remind clinicians on who and what we should be centring our practice on. You can find Christine on twitter via her handle @LivingWellPain.

So in this episode we talk about:
  • Christine's persistent pain journey and her experience of the care she received early on.
  • With the benefit of hindsight (and with a philosophical framework of causal complexity!) she reflects on the biomedical assumptions and models which lead to a standardised and ultimately ineffective management approach for her pain.
  • How her own understanding on causation influences the way you understood her initial onset of pain and persistence in the first year.
  • How Christine later met a physiotherapist Matt Low (who has been on the podcast twice previously (here and here), and is on the next episode of the series) and experienced care informed by a dispensationalist clinical framework, and the changes that resulted in she thought about her neuropathic pain and the subsequent self-management.
  • How she developed an interest in philosophy, and became involved in the CauseHealth research and network.
  • Finally, Christine’s chapter has been by far the most downloaded chapter in the book. We touch on why this might be the case and the main messages she wated to convey in the chapter and the importance of communicating philosophy to clinicians but also patients.
I’d been looking for an opportunity to speak with Christine on the podcast for a long time- and this CauseHealth Series was the perfect setting. There is so much to learn from Christine’s story and her perspective on how mono-causal biomedicalism limited her recovery and her experience of the impact of a therapeutic interaction with a clinician adopting a complex view causality, with a clinical gaze focused on Christine as a person and her unique dispositions.

If you liked the podcast, you'll love The Words Matter online course and mentoring to develop you clinical practice  - ideal for all MSK therapists.
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What is The Words Matter Podcast with Oliver Thomson?

The Words Matter Podcast brings you insights, reflections and conversations focused on the latest evidence, theory, philosophy and practice of communication-focused healthcare.

Find out about the more tacit, 'softer' and personal side of clinical practice such as the role of philosophy, beliefs, behaviours, developing therapeutic relationships or the purposeful use of language with people experiencing pain from expert academics, clinicians and researchers from across the world and spanning the musculoskeletal disciplines. This podcast will help you reflect on your own current practice and inform and stimulate you to consider new ways of approaching your practice and patients, to create a better clinical experience and outcomes in people with musculoskeletal pain.

Hosted by Dr Oliver Thomson PhD, an osteopath and Associate Professor who is passionate about researching and educating clinicians on a revised narrative, communication and biopsychosocial approach to musculoskeletal therapy. If you like the podcast, subscribe and check out the online learning and resources at

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