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The Continuing Evolution of Biopsychosocial Interventions for Chronic Pain

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In the last several decades, great strides have been made in the treatment of persistent painful conditions. The scope of treatment has shifted from purely biomedical, including approaches built upon cognitive, behavioral, and social psychological principles. This article reports and discusses several key paradigm shifts that fueled this revolutionary change in the management of chronic pain. The progressive development of theoretical metamodels and treatment conceptualizations is presented. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most widely accepted biopsychosocial treatment for chronic pain and is founded upon a rich theoretical tradition. The CBT rationale, and empirical evidence to support its efficacy, is presented. The emergence and promise of mindfulness-based and acceptance-based interventions is also discussed. The article concludes with the assertion that future treatment outcome research should focus on understanding the treatment-specific and common factors associated with efficacy.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2012

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