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This paper reports the results of a study which investigated the experiences of 75 people with chronic non-malignant pain People with chronic non-malignant pain can find that traditional medical techniques do not help their pain, and they have to learn to live with it However, pain can affect their lives in many ways Within this study, qualitative data were collected to illustrate what it meant to people to experience this chronic pain It was found that pain adversely affected many dimensions of sufferers' lives, and the effects extended to family and friends It seemed that having others believe the pain was crucial to many patients Health care professionals can offer these patients much in helping them come to terms with the way in which pain has affected both themselves and their lives