Here are some tools used to detect chronicity, identify possible psychological alterations or assess psychosocial factors in patients with chronic pain:

  • The Örebro Musculoskeletal Pain Questionnaire that was developed to help identify patients at risk of developing persistent back pain problems and a related disability.
  • The STarT Back Screening Tool, which is a simple prognosis questionnaire that seeks to assist the healthcare professional with identifying modifiable risk factors for the disabling consequences caused by back pain.
  • The Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale aims to be used as an instrument to measure general psychopathology and it’s very useful in clinical and research fields.
  • The Pain Catastrophizing Scale is a widely used tool to assess with precision the catastrofization that can occur from pain.
  • The Pain Self-Efficacy Questionnaire seeks to evaluate the patient’s belief in their ability to maintain certain behaviours.
  • The Injustice Experience Questionnaire is used to assess perceptions of injustice.

Regarding interventions, we may encounter the traditional placebo, cognitive-behavioral therapy whose focus emphasizes reorganizing negative patient cognition, Mindfulness to favour the resilience especially when accepting pain, and finally self-management approaches based on purpose-building theories to optimize self-confidence to perform the different daily tasks in a competent way in patients with chronic pain.

«Unfortunately, despite several approaches, 5 to 10 percent of people with lower back pain end up being chronic patients»

Tatsunori Ikemoto y colaboradores (2019)

In this regard, Brox and his colleagues noted that lumbar fusion surgery is not more effective in patients with chronic lower back pain compared to a cognitive intervention. Based on this confirmation, it is of particular importance that clinicians recognize the impact and positive effects of biopsychosocial approaches in order to establish and prescribe the most appropriate treatments for patients with chronic lumbar pain. Despite knowing the importance of biopsychosocial treatments, there are few clinics in Japan that offer these services.