University of Tasmania
whole_FischerAlexanderJohn1983_thesis.pdf (4.52 MB)

Cognitive and facial strategies in the control of experimental pain

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posted on 2023-05-26, 23:02 authored by Fischer, Alexander John
An investigation was conducted to test the effect of cognitive strategies and changes in facial expression in the control of experimental cold-pressor pain. Forty-four subjects were divided into four groups matched for sex and age: 1. a cognitive strategy group, instructed to re-interpret pain as cold; 2. a facial strategy group, instructed to 'hide' the facial expression of pain; 3. a combined strategies group which carried out both strategies simultaneously; 4. a no-treatment control group. A number of factors known to correlate with pain were measured by standardized tests to control for any initial differences in group composition. Experimental measures consisted of a pain threshold measure (immersion time), physiological correlates of pain (heart rate, respiration rate, inspiration-expiration ratio) and Ss' pain ratings on a modified version of the McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ). It was hypothesized that both the cognitive strategy and facial strategy would have a significant effect in controlling pain and that the combined strategies would prove the most effective of the treatments. Experimental results indicated that only the cognitive strategies had a significant effect on immersion times as compared to controls. None of the experimental groups differed from controls on MPQ ratings. There were no significant differences between groups on the physiological response measures. The results were discussed in terms of implications for the hypotheses. The experimental method and the adequacy of the measures used, especially the MPQ, were discussed. The implications of the results for the control of clinical pain were elaborated.


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Copyright 1983 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Thesis (M. Psych.)--University of Tasmania, 1983

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