Phantom Pain Case Study Assignment

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Writing to Learn Assignment #4

Phantom Pain

Phantom pain is the phenomenon of pain or discomfort derived from one’s amputated limb. This phantom pain illusion is a common sensation felt in about 50-80 percent of amputees. It is often described as being in a distorted position and exhibits a burning or similarly uncomfortable sensation. Even if the sensation isn’t described as painful, patients still report feeling an itch or a twitch where their limb would have been or that their “phantom limb” feels shorter.

The most commonly believed theory explaining this phantom limb illusion and the resulting pain is “irritation in the severed nerve endings”. When one’s limb becomes amputated, those neural connections between
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show House M.D. explores many of the phenomena and case studies discussed in class and this phantom limb illusion was demonstrated in one of the episodes. House (the main character and a maverick doctor) has a veteran neighbour that lost a hand trying to save someone from an explosion and could still feel the tight and painful clench of holding on to to that person although the moment is far gone and so is his hand. Through a crazy set of events House ties his neighbour down in a chair and forces him to stick both arms in a mirrored box and tells him to clench his still intact hand as tightly as he could and then release. As he releases his hand the stump where his other one used to be was also perceived as the relaxation of a tight grasp seized to hurt…show more content…
What differentiates it from a particularly bad nightmare is the fact that it happens during NREM sleep, not REM sleep where dreaming occurs solely in. Causes of night terrors vary, some experience them due to a stressful life event or sleep deprivation while it can also occur during a fever or the intake of medications that affect the central nervous system. There are no current treatments for night terrors but due to the fact that they are relatively harmless, doctors just encourage to enforce a consistent sleeping pattern to whomever is experiencing
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