A Letter From The Publisher: Jun. 11, 1984

Senior Correspondent Ruth Mehrtens Calvin, who has long specialized in reporting for TIME on behavior, amassed a collection of complaints by patients about pain and its treatment. "About the time the pile got to be a foot high," she recalls, "I came across an editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine called 'The Quality of Mercy,' which showed growing medical concern about this problem." At that point she suggested that TIME do a major story on pain.

The idea struck a responsive chord among TIME'S editors in New York City, particularly Associate Editor...

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