In my dojo (ASU)the emphasis is on leverage rather than Pain.
There appears to be a version of the pressure point hold where the hand of the arm being held goes numb and can't grip anymore.
that's the only concession my teacher makes to whether it's worth using the "nerve pinch"
on the other hand, sempai Kevin (hi kev) has gotten pretty good at finding the ouchy spot on my forearm, and I won't deny it'll make me move quick
the sword cut version is in my opinion pretty effective at taking balance and leading to a controlled pin (with a knee on uke's shoulder on top of everything else)
so pain is considered "icing on the cake" at our digs