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Volume 43 Number 4, July/August 2006
Pages 451 — 460

Abstract - Are patient ratings of chronic pain services related to treatment outcome?

Gabriel Tan, PhD, ABPP;1-2* Mark P. Jensen, PhD;3 John I. Thornby, PhD;1-2 Karen O. Anderson, PhD4

1Michael E. DeBakey Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Houston, TX; 2Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX; 3Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA; 4Department of
Symptom Research, The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
Abstract — -Consumer ratings of satisfaction with treatment are rarely used as measures of treatment outcome. This study examined the relationships between service ratings and psychometric outcomes of patients receiving pain-management services in a tertiary teaching hospital. A group of 122 patients who completed a multidisciplinary pain-management program rated their satisfaction with and effectiveness of services received and changes in their pain condition and quality of life (QOL). They also completed pre- and posttreatment measures of pain severity, pain interference, depression, and disability. Pain severity, pain interference, and depression significantly decreased following treatment. The patients' ratings of services were significantly associated with outcome measures. Pre- to posttreatment changes in pain severity and pain interference were associated with treatment satisfaction and effectiveness, improvement in pain condition, and QOL. Pre- to posttreatment change in disability was significantly related to ratings of treatment effectiveness, improvement in pain condition, and quality of life. The findings suggest that pain intensity, pain interference, and disability are important outcome dimensions of pain-management programs.
Key words: chronic pain, chronic pain treatment, depression, disability, multidisciplinary pain treatment, outcome assessment, pain interference, patient satisfaction, ratings of pain services, rehabilitation, treatment outcome, treatment satisfaction.

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