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Using a profile of a modified Brief ICF Core Set for chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain with qualifiers for baseline assessment in interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation

Authors Löfgren M , Ekholm J, Broman L, Njoo P, Schult M

Received 10 April 2013

Accepted for publication 21 May 2013

Published 28 August 2013 Volume 2013:6 Pages 311—321


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Monika Löfgren,1,2 Jan Ekholm,2 Lisbet Broman,3 Philipe Njoo,1 Marie-Louise Schult1–3

1Department of Rehabilitation Medicine Stockholm, Danderyd University Hospital, Sweden; 2Karolinska Institutet, Division of Rehabilitation Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Danderyd University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden; 3Karolinska Institutet, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Stockholm, Sweden

Aim: To describe the use of a “workable” visual profile of function and disability, based on a modified Brief International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) Core Set for chronic widespread pain, for initial assessments in a clinical setting of interdisciplinary pain rehabilitation teams.
Method: The Brief ICF Core Set was slightly adapted to meet the needs of an interdisciplinary rehabilitation medicine team working in a university outpatient clinic and admitting patients referred from primary care. The Core Set categories were made measurable by means of eg, assessment instruments and clinical investigations. The resulting profile was given a workable shape to facilitate rapid understanding of the initial assessment outcome.
Results: Individual patients showed different profiles of problems and resources, which facilitated individual rehabilitation planning. At the level of the study group, the profiles for the Core Set component Body Functions showed that most patients had severe impairment in the sensation of pain and exercise tolerance categories of function, but most had resources in the motivation and memory categories of function. Likewise, for the component Activities, most patients had limitations in lifting and carrying objects and remunerative employment, but most had resources in intimate relationships and family relationships. At first, the use of the modified Brief ICF Core Set in the team conference was rather time consuming, but after a couple of months of experience, the team assessment took approximately 30 minutes to complete per patient.
Conclusion: The profile of the modified Brief ICF Core Set for chronic widespread pain served as a common platform, facilitating cooperation between the rehabilitation team members and providing a uniform language, which helped in structuring the clinical work. The profile also provided an easily accessible, overall view of the patient’s problems and resources, which helped in understanding the functioning situation of the patient.

Keywords: ICF, interdisciplinary teamwork, chronic widespread pain, assessment

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