41. Doctor, Naanga Eppadi Irukkanum? (டாக்டர் நாங்க எப்படி இருக்கனும்)

"Doctor, Naanga Eppadi Irukkanum? (டாக்டர் நாங்க எப்படி இருக்கனும்)?," ("Doctor, How Are We?"), is a segment on the Tamil-language channel News7 Tamil, a global 24-hour news channel founded in 2014 in Chennai, India that claims it's the first news channel with a distinctly Tamil perspective on global affairs. Its audience consists of Indian Tamils and the Tamil diaspora. The segment below features an interview with a pain management specialist in Chennai on the topic of muscle pain, fibromyalgia, and myofascial pain:

News7 segment titled "Muscle Pain: Causes and Treatments."

I have limited Tamil fluency, but the physician repeats frequently in English that fibromyalgia and myofascial pain syndrome should be managed holistically through a multifactor approach, using drugs, yoga, hydrotherapy, dry needling, meditation, and desensitization of a hyperesthetic central and peripheral nervous system. "Pain is an unpleasant sensory and emotional disturbance," he says, and suggests both must be addressed in tandem. He stresses that chronically pained patients enter the clinic afraid of what their pain means, and so the physician's task is to continually reassure their patients that their pain is "non-risky." The goal is to help patients "deviate from their routine thoughts of pain."

America's medical curriculum, he notes, calls pain the sixth vital sign, and pain management in the U.S. is the 34th-ranked specialty, higher than it is in India. Even so, the approach this physician presents as axiomatic is more holistic than empirical Western biomedicine typically tolerates. "All pain can be managed," he says, and while he gestures at the possibility of total, sustainable relief from pain, he emphasizes care over over cure, the inseparability of body and mind and senses and emotions, and the benefits of combining systems of allopathic and complementary alternative medicine (CAM), perhaps pointing to a cultural sensibility that more easily accommodates pluralist, acceptance-based strategies of management rather than "Western/modern" strategies of control (Whitman, 2007; Tribe, 2007; McCracken & Eccleston, 2003).

(–126. Kalpataru)