Pain coping profiles in adolescents with chronic pain

Pain. 2008 Nov 30;140(2):368-375. doi: 10.1016/j.pain.2008.09.007. Epub 2008 Oct 19.


This study sought to evaluate the extent to which the pain coping profiles observed by Walker and colleagues in a sample of patients with chronic abdominal pain also were evident in a sample of adolescent patients who presented to a tertiary care clinic for evaluation of a variety of diverse pain conditions. In addition, we aimed to evaluate the relation of these pain coping profiles to patients' emotional and physical functioning. Participants (n=254) were adolescent patients aged 12-17 years. Patients completed the Pain Response Inventory (PRI) as well as measures of pain, somatic symptoms, anxiety and depressive symptoms, and functional disability. Using the PRI classification algorithm developed by Walker and colleagues, we successfully classified all the patients in our sample. We also found that the pain coping profiles successfully differentiated among patients with different levels of symptoms, disability, and emotional distress, further demonstrating the external validity of these profiles. Results have implications for tailoring pain treatment interventions to patients' particular coping profiles.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior
  • Adolescent Psychiatry / statistics & numerical data*
  • Child
  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pain / diagnosis
  • Pain / epidemiology
  • Pain / prevention & control*
  • Pain / psychology*
  • Pain Measurement / statistics & numerical data*
  • Tennessee / epidemiology