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Sustainability of Improvements in Adaptive Coping Following Mind–Body and Activity Training for Chronic Pain

Abstract

Background

The strategies patients use to cope with chronic pain are key determinants of pain-related treatment outcomes and are often targeted in psychosocial interventions for chronic pain. However, improvements in coping often fade after intervention completion. Here, we test whether previously reported improvements in coping following two novel mind–body and activity interventions are maintained 3 months after completion.

Methods

Eighty-two patients with heterogeneous chronic pain were randomized to two identical mind–body and activity interventions, one with the addition of a Fitbit device (GetActive-Fitbit) and one without it (GetActive; n = 41 each). Participants completed measures of pain-catastrophizing, kinesiophobia, mindfulness, adaptive coping, and pain-resilience at baseline, post-intervention, and at 3-month follow-up.

Results

At follow-up, participants in both groups exhibited sustained improvements in all five coping measures compared to baseline (significant in both groups for all measures except for p = .05 in kinesiophobia in GetActive and p = .07 in pain resilience in GetActive-Fitbit).

Conclusions

Overall, GetActive and GetcActive-Fitbit are promising interventions to sustainably improve coping with chronic pain.

Trial Registration

This trial is registered under ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT03412916.

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Funding

This study was funded by two grants from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health: 1R34AT009356-01A1 awarded to the senior author, and 1K23AT010653-01A1 awarded to the first author.

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Affiliations

Authors

Contributions

All authors contributed to the study conception and design. JG delivered the interventions, analyzed the data, and wrote the first draft of the manuscript. AMV conceptualized the study and guided data interpretation and writing. PJP assisted with materials, preparation and data collection. RJK provided input on data interpretation and manuscript writing and TS further assisted with materials and manuscript preparation. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ana-Maria Vranceanu.

Ethics declarations

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. The study was approved by the Institutional Review Board at the MGH.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Research Involving Human and Animal Participants

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

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Greenberg, J., Singh, T., Popok, P.J. et al. Sustainability of Improvements in Adaptive Coping Following Mind–Body and Activity Training for Chronic Pain. Int.J. Behav. Med. (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12529-021-09971-3

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Keywords

  • Chronic pain
  • Mindfulness
  • Coping
  • Resilience
  • Pain catastrophizing