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Patient perspectives on the unwanted effects of multidisciplinary pain management programmes: A qualitative study

Booth, G., Di Rosa, A., Corcoran, P. , Hallisey, C., Lucas, A. & Zarnegar, R. (2024). Patient perspectives on the unwanted effects of multidisciplinary pain management programmes: A qualitative study. Clinical Rehabilitation, doi: 10.1177/02692155241254250


This study aimed to understand the impact of pain management programmes, focusing on the unwanted effects and their influence on patients’ long-term use of self-management strategies.

Qualitative study.

Specialist musculoskeletal hospital in North London, England.

Patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain that have completed a pain management programme.

Multidisciplinary pain management programmes.

Main measures
Data were collected regarding patients’ experiences and unwanted effects from the pain management programme using semi-structured interviews. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.

Fourteen participant interviews were included in the analysis (median age 54 years, 12 females). Four themes were generated from the data: Benefits and burdens, Pain management programme and real life, Social support and Healthcare interventions. Unwanted effects included heightened anxiety related to negative interactions with peers, being in a new environment, worries about ability to cope with the programme, social anxiety from being in a group, the strain on families due to participants being away from home and a sense of abandonment at end of the programme. Burdens associated with implementing pain management strategies were identified, including the emotional burden of imposing their self-management on close family and competing demands with time and energy spent on self-management at the expense of work or home commitments.

Pain management programmes have an important role in helping patients to learn how to self-manage chronic pain. Their unwanted effects and the treatment burdens associated with long-term self-management may be an important consideration in improving the longevity of their beneficial effects.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright © 2024
Publisher Keywords: Chronic pain, pain management programmes, burdens, unwanted effects, patient perspectives, self-management
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences
School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
SWORD Depositor:
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