Chronic Pain resources

online resources:, a resource for the “young, hip and chronic.” A new generation’s approach to living as fully as possible with illness.

 The long-running and always wise Daily Headache blog by Kerrie Smyres of Seattle, a resource on everything from the best ice packs to buy to the latest medical research, by Paula Dumas

"Ten Steps" from the American Chronic Pain Association

Excellent ingographic about chronic pain from

Emma Jones' Geography of Illness site revealing intimate lives of those with chronic illness, including the Nightstand Collective listing books they are reading.



Pain Woman Takes Your Keys and Other Essays from a Nervous System, by Sonya Huber. University of Nebraska Press, 2017.

How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers, by Terri Bernhard, an essential read for living with and accepting chronic illness. Read it over and over again. I wish this would have been out many more years ago. Wisdom Publishers, 2010.

Register, Cheri. The Chronic Illness Experience. Originally titled Living with Chronic Illness: Days of Patience and Passion. New York: Free Press, 1987. Center City, Minn.: Hazelden, 1999.

Nielsen, Patricia D. Living With It Daily: Meditations for People With Chronic Pain. New York: Dell, 1994.

Cleveland, Martha. Chronic Illness and the Twelve Steps: A Practical Approach to Spiritual Resilience. Center City, Minn.: Hazelden, 1988.

(on meditation) Kabat-Zinn, Jon. Full Catastrophe Living. New York: Delta, 1990.

Robbins, Lawrence and Susan S. Lang. Headache Help: A Complete Guide to Understanding Headaches and the Medicines that Relieve Them. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1995.

Tepper, Stewart J. Understanding Migraine and other Headaches. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2004

Young, William B. and Stephen D. Silberstein. Migraine and Other Headaches. New York: Demos Medical Publishing, 2004.



(chronic daily headache) Reese, Hazel Lucretia. I Will Not Complain! My Life with Chronic Illness. Baltimore: Publish America, 2004.

(chronic pain) Heshusius, Lous. Inside Chronic Pain: An Intimate and Critical Account (The Culture and Politics of Health Care Work) (Hardcover): Cornell University Press, October 2009.

(trigeminal neuralgia) Levy, Carol Jay. A Pained Life: A Chronic Pain Journey. Xlibris, 2003.

Hatak, Kristine. A Guided Tour of Hell: Migraine in the Words of its Victims. Roseville, CA: Dry Bones Press, Inc., 1999.

(CRPS) Hemmenway, Nicole. No, It Is NOT In My Head: The Journey of a Chronic Pain Survivor from Wheelchair to Marathon


Bernardi, Andria. “Half-Cranium,” River Oak Review (Oak Park, Ill.), spring/summer 2003, 67-75

Didion, Joan. “In Bed”; Reprinted in The White Album, by Joan Didion. New York: Pocket Books, 1979.

Harden, Holly. 2003. “The Fish That Swim in My Head: A Life with Migraine Headaches” Utne Reader, Sept-October 2003, 45-47. Originally published in Fourth Genre.

Cahn, Susan K. “Come Out, Come Out Whatever You’ve Got! Or, Still Crazy after all these Years,” Feminist Studies 29, no. 1: (spring 2003): p. 7, 12 pages.
(chronic fatigue syndrome)

Chronic migraine patient and writer Mary Gustafson’s adventures:

Indiana Artist Christa Barnell, who has conveyed her experiences with chronic headache through vivid paintings

Late feminist activist/pioneer and CDFIDs patient Naomi Weisstein’s account of survival in a hospital.


Harrison, Jim. The Woman Lit By Fireflies. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1990.

Hustvedt, Siri. Blindfold. New York: W. W. Norton, 1992.


Dusenberry, Maya. Doing Harm: The Truth About How Bad Medicine and Lazy Science Leave Women Dismissed, Misdiagnosed, and Sick, HarperOne, March 2018.

Fillingim, Roger B., ed. Sex, Gender and Pain: Progress in Pain Research and Management. Vol. 17. Seattle: IASP Press, 2000.

Kempner, Joanna. Not Tonight: Migraine and the Politics of Gender and Health, University of Chicago Press, 2014.

Loder, Elizabeth and Marcus, Dawn, eds. Migraine in Women. Hamilton, Ontario, B.C., Canada: Decker and Company, 2003.

Wendell, Susan. The Rejected Body. New York: Routledge, 1996.

Wilson, Elzabeth A. Psychosomatic: Feminism and the Neurological Body. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2004.


Tips from witty playwright Carolyn Gage. Written for those with chronic fatigue, but applies to all the “Tired Girls.” What you want to say to people but haven’t had the nerve to…

HIGHLIGHTED ARTICLES and radio appearances

Interview with Cathy Glaser, very committed founder of the Migraine Research Foundation, and Joel Saper, of the Michigan Head Pain and Neurological Institute. On Women’s Day radio, August 19, 2009.Rare discussion of chronic daily headache, which Glaser’s daughter suffers from. Also raises awareness about childhood migraine/CDH, related symptoms (such as stomach pain and neck pain), and biological roots.

"Headache: New Concepts, Models and Treatments." New concept of seeing headache as chronic, not just episodic (something you can control by just avoiding triggers). Explored in January 2008 issue of the Lancet (neurology journal).

“On Pain’s Trail,” from LA Times, August 22, 2005. Unusually helpful and insightful article about central sensitization and its connection to many pain and fatigue problems, that are mainly experienced by women. This includes chronic headache, endometriosis, and fibromyalgia.


Dedicated completely to raising pubic awareness of the medical under-treatment of women’s hronic pain. Founded by Cynthia Toussaint, a former ballerina who suffers from RSD. Holds conferences and lobbying sessions. Offers updated articles on women and pain:

Also offers newsletter, Headache, with latest medical information. Support group and doctor referral.

Also offers newsletter, Head Lines, with latest medical information.
Support group referral.

MAGNUM: The National Migraine Association (Migraine Understanding Group:
A National Understanding for Migraineurs)

Also offers electronic and paper newsletters, among many other patient resources.



A clearinghouse of unbiased (not funded by a drug company) information evaluating studies in both alternative and Western medicine, from Australia.

MEDICAL RESEARCH (articles have clear summaries in the beginnings)

The ultimate source for the latest medical research, compiled by Dr. Lawrence Robbins of Northbrook, IL

Cephalalgia (published on behalf of the International Headache Society)