John Bove: Chronic Neuropathic Pain



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John L. Bove (J.B.) was an 87 year-old widowed father of 6 and retired educator, who experienced severe chronic neuropathic pain. In 2013, J.B. presented at the emergency room with severe pain in his left abdomen and lower back. He was diagnosed with back pain, and imaging revealed a stable, non-dissecting aortic aneurysm. His pain exacerbated and he was given the diagnosis of postherpetic neuralgia. Although symptoms were subsiding, J.B.'s primary care provider prescribed antidepressants and performed two injections in the upper gluteal region, which exacerbated the pain, after which J.B. was referred to a pain clinic. Through his neuropathic pain journey, J.B. was treated at 4 pain clinics, which mostly focused on pharmaceutical pain management. He trialed many traditional and complementary treatments including massage therapy, chiropractic manipulation, meditation, TENS, two spinal cord stimulators, extensive medications, and acupuncture. Eventually, J.B.’s pain consisted of severe intermittent jolts to the left side, constant burning, and a hypersensitivity called “allodynia,” where even a slight breeze over his exposed skin caused severe pain.

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Pain, Chronic Pain, Case Study, Narrative Medicine


Medicine and Health Sciences

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John Bove: Chronic Neuropathic Pain
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