The Journal of the Spanish Society of Pain publishes our systematic review on psychology and adherence to analgesic treatment in patients with chronic pain

The Journal of the Spanish Society of Pain (RESED) has published the report entitled “Psychological factors associated with the adherence to analgesic treatment in patients with chronic pain: systematic review of the literature”, in which the Observatory of Pain has been working the last months.

This is a systematic review which has the objective of analyzing the psychological factors related to adherence to analgesic treatment in patients with chronic non-cancer pain. For this, 14 original studies published in English and Spanish between June 2009 and June 2019 were selected from the 1184 studies identified during the search in the Web of Science, PsycInfo, Pubmed and Scopus databases.

This is a systematic review whose main objective is to analyze the psychological factors related to adherence to analgesic treatment in patients with chronic non-cancer pain. For this, original articles published in English and Spanish between June 2009 and June 2019 that analyzed psychological variables related to adherence to analgesic treatment in >18 years old population with non-cancer chronic pain were identified from the Web of Science, PsycInfo, Pubmed and Scopus databases.

Of the 1184 articles identified in the search, after the corresponding screening, 14 articles were included in the review. Among the variables analyzed in these studies, depression stands out as the most studied psychological factor (11 articles) followed by anxiety (6 articles), catastrophizing (4 articles) and coping strategies (2 articles).

Psychological factors and their relationship with adherence

According to the results obtained in the study, adherence and psychological factors have an inverse relationship. This means that a higher degree of depression, anxiety, and catastrophizing is associated with a lower adherence to analgesic treatment.

Regarding coping strategies, it was found that positive strategies are associated with an underuse of treatment while negative strategies lead to an overuse of analgesics. In conclusion, this variable was also associated with a poorer adherence to the use of analgesics in this type of patients. 

To analyze psychological factors to improve treatment 

The results of this study evidence that the identification and control of psychological factors in patients with chronic pain could improve their adherence to analgesic treatment. In this way, it seems necessary to incorporate these strategies in the treatment of people with chronic pain in order to improve the quality of life of these patients and to advance in the knowledge and approach of this pathology.

To read the full report, click here.

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