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Exploring Origins: Was John Bonica's Model of Modern-Day Pain Management Influenced by John Lundy's Earlier Work?
  1. Surjya Sen, M.D.,
  2. David P. Martin, M.D., Ph.D. and
  3. Douglas R. Bacon, M.D., M.A.
  1. Department of Anesthesiology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
  2. Department of Anesthesiology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN.
  1. Reprint requests: Douglas R. Bacon, M.D., M.A., Department of Anesthesiology, CH 1-145 Mayo Clinic, 200 First Street SW, Rochester, MN 55905. E-mail: bacon.douglas{at}


Contemporary pain medicine is a multimodality and multidisciplinary field. Many of the current ideas and styles of practice that influence the specialty today can be traced back to John Bonica, M.D., and his model of pain management introduced more than 50 years ago. Although much of the foundation that Bonica helped form involved several original concepts, historically, other anesthesiologists who were Bonica's predecessors also laid the groundwork for what the practice of pain medicine is today. In particular, Emery Rovenstine, M.D., and John Lundy, M.D., had early block clinics to treat painful conditions. While in the army during World War II, Bonica worked closely with his Chief of Surgery, Joel Deuterman, M.D., a physician who had trained at the Mayo Clinic, where he was exposed to Lundy and his techniques. Deuterman may have influenced Bonica's ideas concerning the treatment of chronic painful conditions.

  • Regional anesthesia
  • Pain medicine
  • John Bonica
  • John Lundy
  • Emery Rovenstine
  • Ralph Waters
  • Joel Deuterman

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  • Financial support from the Department of Anesthesiology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.

    This work was presented at the 2005 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, October 22-26, 2005, Atlanta, GA.