Prediction of 'intent,' 'discrepancy with intent,' and 'discrepancy with nonintent' for the patient with chronic pain to return to work after treatment at a pain facility

David A. Fishbain, R. Brian Cutler, Hubert L. Rosomoff, Tarek Khalil, Renee Steele-Rosomoff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: We previously determined that 'intent' to return to work post pain facility treatment is the strongest predictor for actual return to work. The purposes of the present study were the following: to identify variables predicting 'intent'; to predict membership in the 'discrepant with intent' group [those chronic pain patients (CPPs) who do intend to return to work but do not]; and to predict membership in the 'discrepant with nonintent' group (those CPPs who do not intend to return to work but do). Design: A total of 128 CPPs completed a series of rating scales and yes/no questions relating to their preinjury job perceptions and a question relating to 'intent' to return to the same type of preinjury job post-pain facility treatment. These CPPs were part of a grant study for prediction of return to work, and therefore their work status was determined at 1, 3, 6, 12, 18, 24, and 30 months posttreatment. Preinjury job perceptions and other demographic variables were utilized using stepwise discriminant analysis to identify variables predicting 'intent' and predicting membership in the 'discrepant with intent' and 'discrepant with nonintent' groups. Setting: Pain facility (multidisciplinary pain center). Patients: Consecutive low back pain CPPs, mean age 41.66 ± 9.54 years, with the most frequent highest educational status being high school completion (54.7%) and 60.2% being worker compensation CPPs. Results: 'Intent' was predicted by (in decreasing order of probability) postinjury job availability variables, job characteristic variables, and a litigation variable. 'Discrepant with intent' was predicted by (in decreasing order of probability) for the 1-month follow-up time point, postinjury job availability variables, pain variables, a litigation variable, and a function perception variable, and for the final follow-up time point, pain variables only. 'Discrepant with nonintent' was predicted by (in order of decreasing probability) for the 1-month follow-up time point, a job availability variable, a demographic variable, and a functional perception variable, and for the final follow-up time point a pain variable and a job availability variable. The percentage of CPPs correctly classified by each of these analyses was as follows: 'intent' 81.25%, 'discrepant with intent' 87.01% (at 1-month follow-up) and 74.03% (final follow-up), 'discrepant with nonintent' 92.16% (at 1-month follow-up) and 75.00% (final follow-up). Conclusions: CPPs intentions of returning to their preinjury jobs are mainly determined by job availability and job characteristic variables but surprisingly not by pain variables. However, the results with 'discrepant with intent' and 'discrepant with nonintent' groups indicate that actual return to work is determined by an interaction between job availability variables and pain variables with pain variables predominating for long-term outcome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)141-150
Number of pages10
JournalClinical Journal of Pain
Volume15
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 1999

Keywords

  • Chronic pain patients
  • Intent to return to work
  • Job availability
  • Job perceptions
  • Pain facility treatment
  • Return to work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology

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