56% of respondents in a Queensland sample report significant pain: Examining the nature of significant pain in a community sample

Lang, Cathryne P., Sullivan, Karen A., & Yates, Patsy (2007) 56% of respondents in a Queensland sample report significant pain: Examining the nature of significant pain in a community sample. In 42nd Annual Conference of the Australian Psychological Society, Sept 23 - 29, 2007, Brisbane.


Our understanding of the experience and consequences of pain, whom it affects, and the development of effective interventions for chronic pain has been mostly gleaned from studies of tertiary-level chronic pain patients. Such patients are a small subset of total pain sufferers and unlikely represent the majority of people with pain. The first step in furthering our understanding of these issues is to examine the prevalence and the nature of significant pain in a non-tertiary setting. To this end, questionnaires were mailed to 7896 households across 10 randomly chosen postcode districts. Pain was experienced by 56% of respondents. Acute pain (<3mths) was most frequently reported in legs and head whereas chronic pain (≥3mths) was most common in the back. On average, respondents could not complete 8 out of 24 tasks of daily living. Approximately one-third were classified as high disability. Contrary to previous clinic-based research, acute and chronic sufferers did not differ on levels of depression, pain-related anxiety or disability. Although further research is required to confirm these preliminary findings, these results suggest the focus for community-based clinics should be on improving function, rather than reducing psychological symptoms, which appear to be already low.

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ID Code: 6320
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2007 Australian Psychological Society
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 06 Mar 2008 00:00
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:34

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