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Behav Res Ther. 1991;29(5):503-9.

Cognitive-behaviour therapy in the treatment of chronic, occupational pain of the upper limbs: a 2 yr follow-up.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Sydney, N.S.W., Australia.


Nineteen Ss who experienced chronic, occupational pain of the upper limbs and who had previously completed a programme of either individual or group cognitive-behaviour therapy were followed up 2 yr later. Significant improvements on measures of depression, anxiety, coping strategies and interference in daily living were found following treatment. Such improvements were not evident for the waiting list control Ss and no difference was found between group vs individual applications of therapy. A 2 yr follow-up, significant improvements from pre-treatment levels were evident for depression, coping strategies, significant other report of disability, self monitored pain and distress caused by pain. While there was generally little evidence of relapse, a significant decline from post-treatment levels was found for the individual therapy condition compared to the group therapy condition on measures of self monitored pain and interference caused by pain. Since post-treatment levels tended to be somewhat superior for the individual therapy condition, the overall finding at 2 yr follow-up was of minimal difference in outcome for group vs individual forms of cognitive-behaviour therapy. Despite improvements from pre-treatment levels, the vast majority of Ss still reported significant and distressing levels of pain at 2 yr follow-up.

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