Age analysis of cognitive-behavioral group therapy for chronic pain outpatients

Psychol Aging. 1988 Jun;3(2):204-7. doi: 10.1037//0882-7974.3.2.204.


This study explored the effectiveness, in terms of age of the client, of a 10-week cognitive-behavioral group therapy (stress inoculation training) for chronic pain. A total of 69 outpatients between the ages of 27 and 80 (M = 52.74 years, SD = 14.40) with diverse types of chronic pain were assigned randomly to immediate or wait-list-delayed therapy. Self-report measures of pain, activities, coping, and the use of medications and other physical pain control techniques were obtained at baseline, during therapy, and at 1- and 6-month follow-up. Treatment decreased the degree to which pain interfered with activity, increased ability to cope with pain, and decreased use of some medications and other physical treatments. It had little effect on perceived pain intensity. Gains were maintained through 6-month follow-up. Age was unrelated to outcome. Stress inoculation training appears to be an effective method of ameliorating the interference of chronic pain with the daily activities of life for adults of all ages.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chronic Disease
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Internal-External Control
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / psychology
  • Pain Management*
  • Psychotherapy, Group / methods*
  • Relaxation Therapy