Biopsychosocial Approaches to Pediatric Chronic Pain Management

Bonnie S. Essner*, Susan T. Tran, Marissa L. Koven

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Pediatric chronic pain is prevalent among children and adolescents and the incidence is rising, resulting in considerable patient and family distress and impairment, as well as significant financial burden to health-care systems. The biopsychosocial framework has emerged as the predominant conceptualization of pediatric chronic pain. This framework highlights the complex relations among biological, psychological, sociocultural, and health behavior factors that contribute to interpersonal variability in the course and severity of chronic pain. It also guides treatment: the interdisciplinary pediatric chronic pain assessment and treatment model is structured to include clinicians of varying expertise who may together comprehensively address the biopsychosocial contributors to a given patient’s and family’s pain experience. This chapter provides an overview of the biopsychosocial framework, the interdisciplinary pediatric chronic pain treatment model, and examples of specific, evidence-based interventions including pharmacological, exercise-, and sensory discrimination-based, biobehavioral, and psychological treatments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOpioid Therapy in Infants, Children, and Adolescents
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9783030362874
ISBN (Print)9783030362867
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • Biobehavioral treatments
  • Biopsychosocial model
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Interdisciplinary pain treatment
  • Medication and interventional procedures
  • Pediatric chronic pain
  • Physical therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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