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Research projects

Co-morbid social anxiety and chronic pain - A study of common factors and a randomized trial of new treatment strategies

About this project

Project information

Project status




Research subject

Research environments

Background and aim

High degree of comorbidity has been found between chronic pain and both anxiety in general and social anxiety specific. However, knowledge of the etiology behind this comorbidity is scarce. For a person who has been lengthy on sick leave for pain the return to work could involve, among other things, to communicate this circumstances for employers and colleagues. What if these social situations are avoided and if the treatment people with chronic pain get do not pay attention to this?

The overall aim is to increase the knowledge of the emergence and maintenance of comorbidity of chronic pain and emotional problems including social anxiety. A second objective is to develop and improve the treatment for this group of people.


The current project consists in part of a longitudinal study in a clinical pain population and partly of a randomized controlled trial. People with chronic pain will after the rehabilitation be screened for emotional problems including social anxiety and subsequently offered to participate in an internet-based self-help treatment based on CBT-principles.

Clinical relevance

Chronic pain and social anxiety are both individually costly problem for society. A central theme in the society today is return to work after sick leave. This project should have a good chance to increase the frequency of the return to work of people with chronic pain and concurrent emotional problems including social anxiety through the development of new treatment for this group.

Research funding bodies

  • Regional Research Council Mid Sweden
  • Örebro University