Persistent pain in the absence of discernible disease or damage presents a challenge to Western medicine. Repetitive strain injury (RSI) is a reminder that medicine itself is a social construct.
‘It is neither reasonable nor possible to divorce the practice of medicine from the societal culture in which it is practised.’ Thus proclaimed Professors Gorman and Scott in their Forum article in the November issue of this journal. As an example of this truism, they referred to the ‘medicalisation of normality’ and specifically cited the ‘epidemic of upper limb pain in telephonists [in New Zealand, who were]...diagnosed as having an occupational overuse syndrome, formerly called repetitive strain injury (RSI)’. How timely then that this article is asked to address, ‘Whatever happened to RSI?’.