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      Effects and Experiences of Families Following a Web-Based Psychosocial Intervention for Children with Functional Abdominal Pain and Their Parents: A Mixed-Methods Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

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          To evaluate post-treatment efficacy of DARWeb (online psychosocial intervention for children with functional abdominal pain) using a randomized clinical trial design and combining quantitative and qualitative data.

          Patients and methods

          Twenty-five families with children with FAP in the experimental group (EG: accessed to DARWeb) and 36 in the control group (CG: wait-list) were compared. Children and parents completed measures of abdominal pain severity (primary outcome), quality of life, and satisfaction. Moreover, children completed measures of depression, functional disability, catastrophizing and coping strategies; parents completed measures about parental responses to their children’s pain. Families also answered open questions and were interviewed.


          A higher percentage of children in the EG achieved a significant clinical change in abdominal pain severity from the parents’ perspective (28% in the EG vs 8.33% in the CG). There was a significantly greater reduction in pain frequency in the EG compared to the CG (both from the children’s and parents’ perspectives) from mixed repeated-measures analyses of variance (there was not a significant interaction in total scores of pain severity). A higher percentage of children in the EG improved in quality of life and depression compared to the CG (results from mixed methods repeated-measures analyses of variances were not significant). However, there were no differences for disability, pain catastrophizing or the coping strategies assessed from the children’s perspective; neither from the parents’ assessment of quality of life. There were significant interactions for parents’ solicitousness responses and promotion of well behaviors in the expected directions. Families were quite satisfied with the intervention, and the qualitative results confirmed an improvement in pain and having learned important coping strategies.


          Our results support the efficacy of our intervention, but future studies are needed with different profiles of initial severity of the pain problem, longer follow-ups, and other conditions.

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          Most cited references 47

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          The child version of the pain catastrophizing scale (PCS-C): a preliminary validation.

          Catastrophizing about pain has emerged as a critical variable in how we understand adjustment to pain in both adults and children. In children, however, current methods of measuring catastrophizing about pain rely on brief subscales of larger coping inventories. Therefore, we adapted the Pain Catastrophizing Scale (Sullivan et al., 1995) for use in children, and investigated its construct and predictive validity in two studies. Study 1 revealed that in a community sample (400 boys, 414 girls; age range between 8 years 9 months and 16 years 5 months) the Pain Catastrophizing Scale for Children (PCS-C) assesses the independent but strongly related dimensions of rumination, magnification and helplessness that are subsumed under the higher-order construct of pain catastrophizing. This three factor structure is invariant across age groups and gender. Study 2 revealed in a clinical sample of children with chronic or recurrent pain (23 girls, 20 boys; age range between 8 years 3 months and 16 years 6 months) that catastrophizing about pain had a unique contribution in predicting pain intensity beyond gender and age, and in predicting disability, beyond gender, age and pain intensity. The function of pain catastrophizing is discussed in terms of the facilitation of escape from pain, and of the communication of distress to significant others.
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            Randomized controlled trials of psychological therapies for management of chronic pain in children and adolescents: an updated meta-analytic review.

            The purpose of this meta-analytic review was to quantify the effects of psychological therapies for the management of chronic pain in youth. Specifically, in this review we updated previous systematic reviews of randomized controlled trials by including new trials, and by adding disability and emotional functioning to pain as treatment outcomes. Electronic searches of the Cochrane Register of Randomised Controlled Trials, MEDLINE, PsycLIT, EMBASE, and the Social Sciences Citation Index were conducted from inception through August 2008. Methodological quality of the studies was assessed, and data extracted on the three primary outcomes of interest. Twenty-five trials including 1247 young people met inclusion criteria and were included in the meta-analysis. Meta-analytic findings demonstrated a large positive effect of psychological intervention on pain reduction at immediate post-treatment and follow-up in youth with headache, abdominal pain, and fibromyalgia. Small and non-significant effects were found for improvements in disability and emotional functioning, although there were limited data on these outcomes available in the included studies. Omnibus cognitive-behavioral therapy, relaxation therapy, and biofeedback all produced significant and positive effects on pain reduction. Studies directly comparing the effects of self-administered versus therapist-administered interventions found similar effects on pain reduction. Psychological therapies result in improvement in pain relief across several different pain conditions in children. Future trials are needed that incorporate non-pain outcome domains, that focus significant therapeutic content on reductions in disability, and that include extended follow-up to better understand maintenance of treatment effects.
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              Psychological therapies (Internet-delivered) for the management of chronic pain in adults.

               Christopher Eccleston (corresponding) ,  Emma Fisher,  Randi Brown (2014)
              Chronic pain (i.e. pain lasting longer than three months) is common. Psychological therapies (e.g. cognitive behavioural therapy) can help people to cope with pain, depression and disability that can occur with such pain. Treatments currently are delivered via hospital out-patient consultation (face-to-face) or more recently through the Internet. This review looks at the evidence for psychological therapies delivered via the Internet for adults with chronic pain.

                Author and article information

                J Pain Res
                J Pain Res
                Journal of Pain Research
                31 December 2019
                : 12
                : 3395-3412
                [1 ]eHealth Lab, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya , Barcelona, Spain
                [2 ]PSiNET Research Group, Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya , Barcelona, Spain
                [3 ]IWK Health Centre, Halifax, Canada
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Rubén Nieto eHealth Lab, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universitat Oberta De Catalunya , Rambla Del Poblenou, 156, Barcelona08018, SpainTel +34933263538Fax +34 933568822 Email rnietol@uoc.edu
                © 2019 Nieto et al.

                This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms ( https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php).

                Page count
                Figures: 5, Tables: 4, References: 60, Pages: 18
                Original Research


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