PainRelief.com Interview with:
Rui Huang MA
Department of Sociology
University at Buffalo
PainRelief.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: In the U.S., approximately 58.5 million people (23.7% of adults) have arthritis, and at least 15 million of them suffer from severe arthritis-attributable joint pain. Severe joint pain is strongly associated with impaired functioning, disability, mortality, and limited life chances. People with less education disproportionately suffer from joint pain and reduced quality of life.
However, existing research on social determinants of pain relies primarily on individual-level data; it rarely examines the role of macro sociopolitical contexts, such as state-level policies. Moreover, relatively little is known about the geographic distribution of pain, and even less is known about geographic variation in socioeconomic disparities in pain.
To our knowledge, this is the first study to look at how U.S. state-level policies and characteristics shape risk of pain, and educational disparities in pain.Continue reading