Pain is one of the most common symptoms in clinical medicine. Many types of medications and other interventions to treat pain are supported by strong evidence (Carr et al., 2004) and guideline-based pain treatments can lead to significant reductions in pain severity and pain-related outcomes such as quality of life (Chang, Hwang, & Kasimis 2002). However, the fundamental biobehavioral issues which underlie the development of chronic or intractable pain are not well understood. Painmanagement is often suboptimal in situations where it is critical, such as in patients with cancer or other advanced disease (Cleeland et al., 1994). Deficits in pain evaluation, management and treatment have been described across clinical settings, including hospitals, outpatient clinics, emergency rooms and nursing homes, and are often more severe in vulnerable populations, such as the elderly, those with dementia, children, and minorities. (Johnson, Teno, Bourbonniere, & Mor, 2005; Mercadante, 2004; Cleeland et al., 1994; Herr, Bjoro, & Decker, 2006; Todd et al., PEMI Study Group, 2007).
ASJC Scopus subject areas