Richard A. Sherman, PhD

Rich Sherman received his doctorate in psychobiology from New York University in 1973 and has accrued over thirty years of experience teaching and performing research and clinical work in behavioral medicine and related fields. Dr. Sherman is recognized as a superb teacher and has given courses at virtually all levels of adult education including numerous undergraduate, medical resident, and graduate school courses as well as continuing education courses for clinical professionals. He is best known for his work elucidating mechanisms and treatments for phantom limb pain and temporal relationships between changes in muscle tension and pain.

He showed that phantom pain is a series of different physiological disorders which produce similar symptoms and that behavioral treatments based on correcting underlying physiological abnormalities could be highly efficacious. His work on ambulatory recordings of patients with muscular abnormalities including muscle contraction headaches, upper and lower back pain, and urinary incontinence in their normal environments led to the discovery that 'in clinic' recordings are not effective for diagnosis of stress urinary incontinence or many musculoskeletal pain problems while environmental recordings readily pick-up underlying problems.

He has also done significant research on the underlying mechanisms of urinary incontinence among young adults and has honed several behavioral interventions which have proven to be highly efficacious in this population. This work has resulted in over 130 articles and several books for both professionals and patients. His research has been supported by numerous private foundations, for-profit organizations, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Defense, and the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Sherman's recent research on the effectiveness of pulsing electromagnetic fields for healing stress fractures led to development of a novel treatment for migraine headaches. A series of double blind, placebo-controlled studies has shown that exposure of the thighs to pulsed electromagnetic fields results in significantly decreased frequency and intensity of migraines. This treatment is currently making the transition from laboratory to general clinical practice.

His clinical practice emphasizes treatment of headaches, musculoskeletal pain, as well as urinary and fecal incontinence. As Director of the non-profit Behavioral Medicine Research and Training Foundation, he has developed a broad based continuing education program in behavioral medicine through which people interested in psychophysiology can take courses in general biofeedback, pain, urinary incontinence, etc. He is Dean of the Clinical Psychophysiology Doctoral Program at the University of Natural Medicine.

He has been President of the Surface EMG Division, Chairman of the Research and Instrumentation Committee, and Chairman of the Program Committee (twice) of the Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback.

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