Single Session Pain Psychology Treatment: Comparative Efficacy & Mechanisms

Not Recruiting

Trial ID: NCT03167086


This study aims to compare the efficacy of a single session psychological treatment, "Empowered Relief" (ER), with the current standard of care, group Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) specifically on individuals with chronic low back pain who have pain-specific distress as indexed by pain catastrophizing scores.

Official Title

"Empowered Relief" Single Session Pain Psychology Treatment: Comparative Efficacy & Mechanisms

Stanford Investigator(s)

Beth Darnall
Beth Darnall

Professor of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine (Adult Pain) and, by courtesy, of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (General Psychiatry & Psychology (Adult))

Sean Mackey, M.D., Ph.D.
Sean Mackey, M.D., Ph.D.

Redlich Professor, Professor of Anesthesiology, Perioperative, and Pain Medicine and, by courtesy, of Neurology


Inclusion Criteria:

   - Axial low back pain without radicular symptoms

   - Pain duration ≥ 6 months (per recent NIH Task Force on Research Standards for Chronic
   Low Back Pain based on participant self-report

   - Average pain intensity ≥4/10 for the past month at screening visit

   - English fluency

   - Males and females 18-70 years of age

   - Pain Catastrophizing Score (PCS) ≥20

Exclusion Criteria:

   - Gross cognitive impairment

   - Active suicidal ideation or severe depression

   - Previous attendance in the active treatment groups (any ER classes ever taken or CBT
   in the past 3 years)

   - Participating in any interventional research study or completed participation in the
   last 2 months; enrollment in an observational study is acceptable

   - Current substance abuse

   - Clear likelihood to disrupt fellow class participants (e.g., personality disorder) at
   the discretion of the study team


behavioral: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

behavioral: Health Education (HE)

behavioral: "Empowered Relief" (ER)

Not Recruiting

Contact Information

Stanford University
School of Medicine
300 Pasteur Drive
Stanford, CA 94305
Beth Darnall, PhD
(650) 497-0484