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Clin J Pain. 2015 Mar;31(3):222-8. doi: 10.1097/AJP.0000000000000102.

An investigation of the associations between measures of mindfulness and pain catastrophizing.

Author information

1
*Department of Psychology, University of Alabama †Psychology Service, V.A. Medical Center, Tuscaloosa, AL.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Mindfulness and pain catastrophizing are important constructs in pain research, and there are theoretical reasons for suspecting that measures of the 2 constructs should be related in predictable ways. The present study investigated the association of pain catastrophizing (Pain Catastrophizing Scale) with mindfulness (Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire). The Penn State Worry Questionnaire was included to control for confounding of worry; the influence of demographics was explored.

METHODS:

The participants were 214 undergraduates, who were administered questionnaires via the Internet. Analyses assessed relationships after correcting for attenuation.

RESULTS:

The mindfulness scales had intercorrelations with catastrophizing ranging from -0.23 to 0.13; the Non-Judging, Non-Reactivity, and Acting with Awareness mindfulness scales correlated significantly with catastrophizing. However, worry was better correlated (r=0.35) with catastrophizing, and the mindfulness scales were not significantly related to catastrophizing after controlling for worry. Mindfulness scales were significant predictors (P=0.018) of catastrophizing scores in a single-indicator latent variable analysis, and 1 mindfulness scale (Non-Reactivity) contributed uniquely (P=0.006) to prediction. None of the mindfulness scales significantly predicted catastrophizing scores when worry was controlled, but the path from worry to catastrophizing was significant (P=0.048). Sex differences in catastrophizing scores were explained by sex differences on the worry scale (P<0.001).

DISCUSSION:

These findings suggest that it is important to assess more general cognitive-emotional constructs, such as worry, when making inferences about the influence of mindfulness or changes in mindfulness upon catastrophic thinking in response to pain.

PMID:
24699159
DOI:
10.1097/AJP.0000000000000102
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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