This study used 'think aloud' to explore issues around using a standardised questionnaire to assess persistent pain after joint replacement. Twenty participants with moderate-extreme persistent pain in their replaced hip or knee completed the Chronic Pain Grade (CPG) while 'thinking aloud'. The interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed and analysed using thematic analysis. Completion of the CPG by patients was influenced by four issues: challenges with the question wording or response options on the CPG items; the fluctuating nature of pain and functional limitations; the need to account for co-morbidities and pain elsewhere; and adjustment to pain. These issues reflect those that have arisen previously in patients with musculoskeletal pain, and need to be considered when assessing persistent joint pain, both before and after joint replacement.
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