Development of a questionnaire for the assessment of active and passive coping strategies in chronic pain patients

Pain. 1987 Oct;31(1):53-64. doi: 10.1016/0304-3959(87)90006-6.


This study describes the development of a self-report questionnaire, the Vanderbilt Pain Management Inventory, which assesses the frequency with which chronic pain patients use active or passive coping strategies when their pain reaches a moderate or greater level of intensity. Two internally reliable scales, Active Coping and Passive Coping, were derived using factor analytic techniques from a sample of 361 rheumatoid arthritis patients. The 2 scales showed an opposite pattern of relationships with criterion measures. While Active Coping was associated with reports of less pain, less depression, less functional impairment, and higher general self-efficacy, Passive Coping was correlated with reports of greater depression, greater pain and flare-up activity, greater functional impairment, and lower general self-efficacy. The relationship of these scales to previous theory and research on coping is presented. These scales appear useful for the assessment of coping strategies in clinical settings and in treatment outcome research on chronic pain.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / psychology
  • Chronic Disease
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / psychology*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*