Pain behavior and pain coping strategies were systematically measured in a group of 32 chronic low back pain (LBP) and 32 myofascial pain dysfunction (MPD) syndrome patients. Both groups reported high levels of psychological distress on the SCL-90R. The LBP patients were significantly less active, took more narcotic and sedative-hypnotic medications, and showed higher levels of motor pain behavior (guarding, rubbing, and bracing) than the MPD patients. The LBP patients used attention diversion, and praying or hoping as pain coping skills to a much greater extent than the MPD patients. The relationship of these findings to prior research is described, and future research needs in this area are identified.
1Reprint requests should be sent to: Dr. Francis J. Keefe, Pain Management Program, Box 3926, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, U.S.A.
Submitted August 1, 1984; revised July 2, 1985; accepted July 8, 1985.
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