Alan Gordon, LCSW, is a psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of chronic pain. Gordon has authored publications on the treatment of chronic pain and has presented on the topic of pain treatment at hospitals, mental health facilities and pain centers throughout California. He served as the chair of the Mind-Body Conference at UCLA in 2010.
University of Southern California: MSW 2005
University of California, Los Angeles: BA, Economics 1999
Areas of Expertise (4)
Industry Expertise (3)
Articles & Publications (1)
This article notes that a small but growing number of healthcare professionals believe that chronic pain is often a psychophysical phenomenon that responds well to psychological treatment. The author tells the story of tension myoneural syndrome (TMS), which suggests that the majority of neck, shoulder and back pain syndromes are not the result of nerve, muscle or ligament damage, but rather the consequences of psychological processes. This article describes the physiology of TMS and the purpose of TMS pain (where the mind attempts to protect against psychological pain by producing physical pain). The author outlines examples of TMS such as whiplash, which only occurs in countries where it’s understood – using Lithuania, where there is little awareness of whiplash, the author recounts how not a single crash victim suffers from the complaint. The article concludes by looking at treatments for TMS, the evidence for TMS, and the future for research.