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Pain Diagnosis, Pain Coping, and Function in Individuals with Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain

Authors Ferreira-Valente A, Queiroz-Garcia I, Pais-Ribeiro J, Jensen MP

Received 26 October 2019

Accepted for publication 7 March 2020

Published 22 April 2020 Volume 2020:13 Pages 783—794

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JPR.S236157

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr E Alfonso Romero-Sandoval


Alexandra Ferreira-Valente,1,2 Inês Queiroz-Garcia,1 José Pais-Ribeiro,1 Mark P Jensen2

1William James Center for Research, ISPA – Instituto Universitário, Lisbon, Portugal; 2Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA

Correspondence: Alexandra Ferreira-Valente
William James Center for Research, ISPA - Instituto Universitário, Rua Jardim do Tabaco, no 34, Lisbon 1149-041, Portugal
Tel +351 969082988
Fax +351 218860954
Email mafvalente@gmail.com

Purpose: Research supports a role for coping responses in adjustment to chronic pain. However, it is likely that some coping responses play a larger role in adjustment to pain for some individuals than others. The identification of the factors that moderate the association between coping responses and pain-related outcomes has important clinical implications. This study sought to determine if musculoskeletal pain diagnosis moderates the associations between eight pain-coping responses and both pain and function.
Patients and Methods: A non-probabilistic sample of 323 persons with different chronic musculoskeletal pain conditions completed measures of pain intensity, physical function, psychological function, and pain-coping responses.
Results: With only one exception, the frequency of use of pain-coping responses was not associated with pain diagnosis. Statistically significant moderation effects of pain diagnosis on the association between coping and pain outcomes were found for two coping responses: 1) support seeking when predicting pain intensity, and 2) resting when predicting both physical and psychological function.
Conclusion: The findings indicate that coping responses tend to play a similar role in patients’ pain and function across different musculoskeletal pain conditions, with some important exceptions. If the findings are found to replicate in other samples, they would have important implications for determining when psychosocial pain treatments might (and when they might not) need to be adapted for specific diagnostic groups.

Keywords: pain etiology, moderation effect, coping responses, pain, physical function, psychological function

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