The Brief Pain Inventory: pain's interference with functions is different in cancer pain compared with noncancer chronic pain

Jacob C Hølen, Stian Lydersen, Pål Klepstad, Jon Håvard Loge, Stein Kaasa
Clinical Journal of Pain 2008, 24 (3): 219-25

OBJECTIVES: The Brief Pain Inventory (BPI) is a highly recommended and frequently used multidimensional pain assessment tool. The BPI includes 2 dimensions: pain intensity and pain's interference with functions. Our aims were to explore how patients respond to pain interference items by comparing responses from patients who had cancer with patients who had noncancer chronic pain (NCCP), and to explore how different levels of health-related quality of life affect upon pain's interference with functions.

METHODS: Three hundred patients with cancer and 286 patients with NCCP were asked to complete the BPI and the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer's Quality of Life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30). The pain interference items were indexed into total interference, interference with physical functions, and interference with psychologic functions. Regression analyses were used to explore differences in pain's interference by group, pain intensity, and a possible interaction effect between them. The analyses were adjusted for age, sex, and all EORTC QLQ-C30 scales.

RESULTS: The cancer patients reported higher values of physical interference than NCCP patients with the same level of pain intensity (P<0.001). NCCP patients reported higher values of psychologic interference than cancer patients (P=0.023). For total interference, these effects eliminated each other. When adjusting for age, sex, and the EORTC QLQ-C30 subscales, the results still remained significant except that adjusting for the subscale for physical function made the group effect insignificant for physical interference (P=0.30).

DISCUSSION: The results indicate that patients are unable to report isolated pain's interference using the BPI. When reporting pain's interference with physical functioning, the level of physical functioning is more important than the level of pain. Patients' diagnoses have to be taken into account when interpreting reported pain's interference with functions.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Available on the App Store

Available on the Play Store
Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"