2020-01-03 00:01:04 UTC
Posted by Nick Ng | Dec 24, 2019
Going beyond muscles, bones, and joints, Dr. Ronald Melzack paved a path to a more complex yet holistic way of understanding pain, leading to a gentler approach to treating patients.
Famed psychologist and pain researcher Ronald Melzack died on Sunday, December 22, 2019, in Montréal. His work had revolutionized how clinicians and patients understand pain and modern pain research, which had impacted every field of medicine in the last half of the twentieth century. His work revolutionized pain management and pain education, like what Albert Einstein did with physics, as a documentary mentioned. He was 90.
His death was announced on Twitter by the Alan Edwards Centre for Research on Pain at McGill University, the same institution where Dr. Melzack earned his PhD in 1954 with Dr. Donald O. Hebb as his research adviser. The cause of death was not disclosed.
Born in 1929 in a Jewish-dominant community in Montréal, Quebec, Dr. Melzack was born to a working class family and had two older brothers, Jack and Louis. His parents could afford to sent him to a university while his brother worked at his family’s bookstore, which later became the chain “Classic Bookshops.”
After he graduated from McGill University, Dr. Melzack began to treat patients who experience phantom-limb pain. His observations and interviews with patients led him to develop the McGill Pain Questionnaire, which is now used in hospitals and clinics worldwide...
(first page of an article for Scientific American: "The Tragedy of Needless Pain")
(two Kirkus reviews)
WRITINGS BY THE AUTHOR:
The Day Tuk Became a Hunter and Other Eskimo Stories (retold), Dodd, 1967.
Raven, Creator of the World (Eskimo legends retold), Little, Brown, 1970.
Why the Man in the Moon Is Happy, and Other Eskimo Creation Stories (retold), McClelland & Stewart, 1977.
(With P. D. Wall) The Puzzle of Pain, Penguin, 1973, revised edition published as The Challenge of Pain, Basic Books, 1983.
(Editor) Pain Measurement and Assessment, Raven Press, 1983.
(Editor with Wall) Textbook of Pain, Churchill Livingstone, 1984.
(Co-editor) Handbook of Pain Assessment, Guilford Press, 1992.