Send to

Choose Destination
Pain. 2005 Jan;113(1-2):155-9.

Social context and acceptance of chronic pain: the role of solicitous and punishing responses.

Author information

Pain Management Unit, Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases and University of Bath, Upper Borough Walls, Bath BA1 1RL, UK.


Much of the behavior of chronic pain sufferers happens in social contexts where social influences can play a role in their suffering and disability. Researchers have investigated relations of social responses with verbal and overt pain behavior and, more recently, with patient thinking, such as catastrophizing. There has not yet been a study of social influences on patient acceptance of chronic pain. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the relations between solicitous, punishing, and distracting responses, from significant others in the patient's life, with components of patient acceptance of pain. 228 consecutive patients referred to a multidisciplinary pain center provided data for this study including their responses to the Chronic Pain Acceptance Questionnaire and the Multidimensional Pain Inventory. Primary results showed that, as predicted, both solicitous and punishing responses from significant others were negatively associated with acceptance of pain. These relations remained, independent of patient age, education, pain level, and level of general support from the significant other. These results suggest that social influences can play a role in patients' engagement in activity with pain present and their willingness to have pain without trying to avoid or control it.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wolters Kluwer
Loading ...
Support Center