VISTAS Assessment, Evaluation, Accountability and Research in Counseling

VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.

A Quantitative Measure of the Effects of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Chronic Pain

Mary L Fawcett, Janet Evans, and George Maycock


Physicians and behavioral health professionals have accepted psychological treatments since the 1970s because of inconsistent research findings related to the success of reducing chronic pain by medications alone (Puder, 1988) and research indicating the persistence of pain despite medical treatment (Wall, 1979). As early as 1982, Melzack and Wall found flaws in the medical model as applied to chronic pain treatment, and Thorn (2004) reported weaknesses in the diagnostic tools used by physicians and mental health professionals (i.e., the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [4 th ed. text rev.] and the International Classification of Diseases [10th rev.]) because of the lack of biopsychosocial variables in the diagnosis of pain. In recent years, multidisciplinary approaches to pain management became commonly accepted in nonmalignant pain treatment (Marcus, 2000). The idea of incorporating a variety of psychosocial therapies in the treatment of pain is advantageous to patients for whom only one of two types of therapies may not address their situation (Jensen, 2011).

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