Psychosocial factors and the pain experience of osteoarthritis patients: new findings and new directions.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The present paper reviews recent psychosocial research in the area of osteoarthritis pain. First, the review highlights studies of psychosocial factors that can influence osteoarthritis pain. Next, research testing the efficacy of psychosocial treatments for osteoarthritis pain is summarized. RECENT FINDINGS: Recent studies suggest that asking osteoarthritis patients to recall pain experiences may not be as accurate as having them keep daily pain records. New studies also support the notion that fatigue and increased weight are linked to higher osteoarthritis pain. Osteoarthritis patients who report higher levels of depression are more prone to report increased osteoarthritis pain. New studies also indicate that social factors such as ethnic background, ability to communicate pain to others, and participation in social activities can influence osteoarthritis pain and disability. Cognitions about pain (i.e. pain catastrophizing, acceptance, self-efficacy for pain) also have been found to relate to pain in patients with osteoarthritis. Recent, randomized controlled studies suggest that psychosocial interventions (i.e. self-management programs, exercise) can decrease osteoarthritis pain and disability. SUMMARY: Several psychosocial variables have been suggested as influencing osteoarthritis pain and disability. There is evidence that psychosocial interventions may decrease osteoarthritis pain and disability.
Somers, TJ; Keefe, FJ; Godiwala, N; Hoyler, GH
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