Survey: Media coverage of terrorism enhances chronic pain

According to Ben-Gurion University of the Negev researchers, continual coverage of terrorist attacks increases pain levels of people suffering from chronic pain.

Researchers of the study surveyed 55 chronic pain patients, who completed self-reported questionnaires asking about their pain, depression and anxiety before and after a three-week missile attack.

The published study “Does War Hurt? Effects of Media Exposure After Missile Attacks on Chronic Pain" shows that exposure to the attacks through the media predicted an increase in pain intensity and in the sensory component of pain.

However, the study does not predict any anxiety or depression.

Golan Shahar, professor of BGU's Department of Psychology, said previous levels of emotional distress may affect people’s ability to cope with future stressful situations.

“[This is] making stressors more prominent and influencing [people] to seek out more information about their situation,” he said.