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Title: Chronic Pain after Spinal Cord Injury
Author: Boulton, Holly
ISNI:       0000 0001 3472 1939
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2007
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Chronic pain is a common and problematic issue for many individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI; Kennedy, Lude, & Taylor, 2006). Whilst understanding of chronic pain in the general population is increasing, understanding of such pain after SCI remains limited. The literature review explores the issue ofchronic pain after SCI and considers how two dominant models of pain may be applied to chronic pain after SCI. Three pertinent psychological issues are discussed that may play an important role in the maintenance and exacerbation of chronic pain in individuals with SCI; attention, depression, and PTSD. The review stresses that further research into these factors is vital in order to further understanding ofchronic pain in individuals with SCI. The empirical paper focuses of one of the main psychological factors highlighted in the literature review: attentional bias. The study explores whether individuals with SCI and chronic pain possess an attentional bias for pain-related words. Three groups were recruited: chronic pain and SCI (n =14), SCI (n = 15), and healthy controls (n = 15). All participants completed a dot probe computer task that presented pain-related words, pertaining to sensory and affective characteristics ofchronic pain, and neutral words. Words were presented at two exposure durations, 500ms and 1250 ms. Results showed that individuals with chronic pain and SCI possessed an overall attentional bias towards pain related information, in comparison with the other two groups. This difference in attentional bias between the groups was not significantly affected by exposure duration (500ms vs. 1250 ms) or type ofpain words (affective vs. sensory pain words). The general theoretical and clinical implications are discussed, and some suggestions are made for future research
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available