Simona Bujoreanu, PhD: A Multidisciplinary Approach to Pain Management


Dr. Simona Bujoreanu explains the importance of acknowledging the psychological aspect of chronic pain management.

When people think about chronic pain, many people think of it as a physical ailment, but in order for complete treatment, the psychological aspect of pain has to be acknowledged, according to Simona Bujoreanu, PhD, Pediatric Psychologist, Pain Medicine at Boston Children's Hospital, Associate Director, Comfort Ability Program, Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School.

During the American Academy of Pediatrics conference, Bujoreanu gave a presentation: Tools to Tackle Chronic Pain Syndromes. In her presentation, Bujoreanu explained that chronic pain is best understood through the biopsychosocial perspective.

The biopsychosocial approach extends beyond just a medication-based, or intervention-based treatment from a medical perspective and takes on a more rehabilitative multidisciplinary approach.

In this video interview, Bujoreanu elaborated on the psychological side of pain and how it relates to the physical. She stressed the importance of education for patients and families as well as physicians.

“How do we actually create a common ground between physicians and patients with really early intervention and education about it,” she said, “rather than completely moving into problem-solving and solution-focus, because then if the solution doesn’t work, when other options are being provided it feels like a defeat.”

Bujoreanu continued to say that a multidisciplinary approach that can be adjusted to the individual can be more impactful than trying to tackle the pain from one angle at a time.

“We have the whole arsenal of medication, and interventions, and psychological support, and behavioral strategies, that we know can help--let’s do them all at the same time,” she said.

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