McCracken, Gauntlett-Gilbert, & Vowles, 2007

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APA Citation: 

McCracken, L. M., Gauntlett-Gilbert, J., & Vowles, K. E. (2007). The role of mindfulness in a contextual cognitive-behavioral analysis of chronic pain-related suffering and disability. Pain, 131, 63-69.

Publication Topic: 
ACT: Empirical
Publication Type: 
chronic pain, mindfulness, assessment

An increasing number of studies consider the specific processes by which distressing sensations, thoughts, and emotional experiences exert their influence on the daily functioning of those who suffer with chronic pain. Clinical methods of mindfulness and the processes that underlie them appear to have clear implications in this area, but have not been systematically investigated to this point in time. The purpose of the present study was to examine mindfulness in relation to the pain, emotional, physical, and social functioning of individuals with chronic pain. The present study included 105 consecutive patients attending a clinical assessment for treatment of chronic pain. Each completed a standardized battery of questionnaires, including a measure of mindfulness, the Mindful Attention Awareness Scale (Brown and Ryan, 2003). Correlation analyses indicated that mindfulness was unrelated to age, gender, education, or chronicity of pain, but was significantly related to multiple measures of patient functioning. In multiple regression analyses, after controlling for pain-related acceptance, mindfulness scores accounted for significant variance in measures of pain-related distress, depression, pain-related anxiety, physical and psychosocial disability, and pain-related medication use. In each instance greater mindfulness was associated with better functioning. The combined increments of variance explained from acceptance of pain and mindfulness were remarkably large relative to those often achieved in psychological studies of chronic pain. The behavioral processes of mindfulness and their accessibility to scientific study are considered.

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