Multidisciplinary treatment for chronic pain: a systematic review of interventions and outcomes

The objective of this systematic review was to provide an overview of the effectiveness of multidisciplinary treatments of chronic pain and investigate about their differential effects on outcome in various pain conditions and of different multidisciplinary treatments, settings or durations.  Compared with other non-disciplinary treatments, moderate evidence of higher effectiveness for multidisciplinary interventions was shown. In contrast to no treatment or standard medical treatment, strong evidence was detected in favour of multidisciplinary treatments. The evidence that comprehensive inpatient programmes were more beneficial that outpatient programmes was moderate. Fibromyalgia and chronic back pain patients tended to profit more substantially than patients with diverse origins or chronic pain diagnoses. No evidence was found that treatment variables, such as duration or programme components, were influential for the success of the intervention.

For chronic pain, multidisciplinary interventions are more effective than no treatment, other non-disciplinary treatments or standard medical treatment.

Rheumatology, 2008, 47(5), 670-678

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