Finding a solution to the problem of pain: Conceptual formulation and the development of the Pain Solutions Questionnaire (PaSol)

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Abstract

We report the development of the Pain Solutions Questionnaire (PaSol), an instrument designed to measure assimilative (efforts at changing or solving pain) and accommodative (accepting that pain cannot be solved, and changing life goals) responses to the problems associated with pain. Data were collected from 476 adults suffering from chronic pain. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses resulted in a 14-item instrument with an adequate oblique 4-factor structure: (1) Solving Pain scale (4 items), (2) Meaningfulness of Life Despite Pain scale (5 items), (3) Acceptance of the Insolubility of Pain scale (3 items), and (4) Belief in a Solution scale (2 items). The validity of the PaSol was further tested by its value in explaining disability and affective distress after controlling for the effects of the demographic characteristics and pain severity. The Meaningfulness of Life Despite Pain scale was important in explaining disability and affective distress. The Solving Pain scale had a unique and independent contribution in explaining affective distress. Results are discussed in terms of how a persistence in assimilative coping, even though the pain problem is insoluble, may increase hypervigilance, catastrophizing, distress and disability.

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