Guided Internet-based Psycho-educational Intervention Using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Self-management for Individuals with Chronic Pain: A Feasibility Study

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Abstract

When considering barriers to chronic pain treatment, there is a need to deliver nonpharmacological therapies in a way that is accessible to all individuals who may benefit. To conduct feasibility testing using a guided, Internet-based intervention for individuals with chronic pain, a novel, Internet-based, chronic pain intervention (ICPI) was developed, using concepts proven effective in face-to-face interventions. This study was designed to assess usability of the ICPI and feasibility of conducting larger-scale research, and to collect preliminary data on effectiveness of the intervention. Data were collected at baseline, after each of the six intervention modules, and 12 weeks after intervention completion. Forty-one participants completed baseline questionnaires, and 15 completed the 12-week postintervention questionnaires. At baseline, all participants reported satisfaction with the structure of the intervention and ease of use. Internet-based platforms such as Facebook aided in accrual of participants, making further large-scale study of the ICPI feasible. There is preliminary evidence suggesting that the ICPI improves emotional function but not physical function, with a small but significant decrease in pain intensity and pain interference. Most participants felt they benefited at least minimally as a result of using the ICPI. The ICPI was well received by participants and demonstrated positive outcomes in this preliminary study. Further research with more participants is feasible and necessary to fully assess the effect of this intervention.

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