Is the search for a "pain personality" of added value to the Fear-Avoidance-Model (FAM) of chronic pain?


tion of fear and avoidance and rather deconstruct and reframe In this issue of the Scandinavian Journal of Pain, Brooke Naylor, imon Boag and Sylvia Maria Gustin present a thought provokng narrative review of 120 years of research on the relationship etween chronic pain and personality [1]. The study of personalty is a branch within psychology that aims to identify traits and echanisms within individuals that are organized and relatively nduring and that influence interactions with, and adaptations to, he environment (including the intrapsychic, physical, and social nvironment) [2]. Needless to say, chronic pain and its associated uffering has sparked a longstanding and varied research effort to ry and capture individual characteristics and mechanisms releant to understanding the occurrence and maintenance of pain roblems. Throughout the 20th century this effort has taken many hapes and forms, historically mostly following the flow of research ith the field of personality research at large. In their account of his research, Naylor et al. touch upon for example early psychodyamic formulations, MMPI profiling studies, trait studies focused n neuroticism, anxiety sensitivity and injury/illness sensitivity, nd attachment studies. However, these accounts provide a backrop of the review, as the focus and aim is on presenting and aking a case for the potential added value of the concepts ‘harm voidance’ and ‘self-directedness’, two aspects of Cloninger’s comrehensive personality model [3]. In a range of (predominantly case control) studies, high levls of harm avoidance (being worrying and fearful, sensitive to riticism and punishment, and pessimistic) and low levels of selfirectedness (being blaming, destructive, fragile and lacking an nternal locus of control) have shown to be associated to the resence of chronic pain problems. Given their resemblance to oncepts like pain-related fear, catastrophizing, self-efficacy and assive or avoidant coping, a potential advantage of these person-

DOI: 10.1016/j.sjpain.2017.08.019

Cite this paper

@article{Boersma2017IsTS, title={Is the search for a "pain personality" of added value to the Fear-Avoidance-Model (FAM) of chronic pain?}, author={Katja Boersma}, journal={Scandinavian journal of pain}, year={2017} }