Does Dr. Sarno’s TMS method work?


I received this message from a sufferer recently:


I came across your page relating to your RSI. I have had this myself for about 2 years (never to the degree you've had yours though), but have found over the last 3 months the pain has 99% gone. I owe this to a train of thought by a Dr Sano, he works in a feild of something called TMS.


Have you ever come across this as it might help you out, to give you a little insight I was in the middle of a perticuarly painful few months of RSI and had resorted to taking painkillers/Anti inflams again to ease the pain whilst in work, upon reading about this on one of the websites I came across I stopped taking the painkillers/Anti inflams and have not had any pain since, I really found it quite incrediable. I then brought some of his books wich gave me a whole new way of looking at it.


Thought I'd mention it as your website reminded me of everything I went through to get where I am today.


My response is reproduced below:


Thanks for taking the time to write to me. Much appreciated.


I purchased Sarno's book in December 2002 when I had already tried all kinds of treatments, and it was clear which one was starting to work on me. I read his book and found that his treatment applies only to those without a physical cause. As Sarno says in his book, his method is clearly applicable to pain with psychological causes such as rage and emotion. I had no rage, no emotion against any individual. Just my normal self, but working very hard, as I normally do.


I rate Sarno's treatment on par with reiki, accupuncture, traditional chinese  medicine, hypnotherapy, and homeopathy. It clearly works on the placebo effect which is extremely powerful, and not to be laughed at. In other words, I'm not saying it doesn't work when there are distinct psychological causes.


But all placebo type treatments failed in my case, as did pain killers. I did not waste time trying to follow Sarno's advice - having myself studied psychology (and abnormal psychology) quite extensively in the past.


When muscles are clearly cramped very badly all across the upper body as was the case with me, rooted entirely on clearly traceable physical causes, then the mind is simply not powerful enough to relax these muscles. I have seen clear correlations between the effects of my physical activities and the effects of treatments which include postural awareness, extensive stretches, and strengthening, apart from the key treatment of myotherapy. My reduced cramping can be physically located with ease by any massage therapist, apart from my subjective experience of pain and numbness being reduced.