Summary of How VR Could Break America’s Opioid Addiction

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Virtual Reality (VR) isn’t just for gamers. New developments in VR applications hope to alleviate pain for patients. Science journalist and author Jo Marchant shares the story of how researchers have developed VR programs to reduce chronic pain including before-and-after examples. Marchant also provides an insightful backstory to the abuse and addiction of prescription opioid drugs among patients in the United States. getAbstract recommends her insights to those interested in the intersection of medicine, psychology and technology.

About the Author

Jo Marchant is an author and science journalist with a PhD in genetics. She has worked as an editor at New Scientist and at Nature. Her latest book is Cure: A Journey into the Science of Mind over Body.



The United States is hurting. One in three Americans deal with chronic pain. For some, the pain is so severe that they can’t function normally in society. For others, suicide seems like a better choice than living with pain.

US patients who live with constant pain have turned to prescription drugs in overwhelming numbers. In fact, Americans consume 80% of the world’s opioid supply. These drugs are not only addictive, but oftentimes they’re deadly, causing overdoses and fatalities...

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