Confronting Racism in Pain Research: A Call to Action

Academic Article


  • Racism is an established health determinant across the world. In this 3-part series, we argue that a disregard of how racism manifests in pain research practices perpetuates pain inequities and slows the progression of the field. Our goal in part-1 is to provide a historical and theoretical background of racism as a foundation for understanding how an antiracism pain research framework - which focuses on the impact of racism, rather than “race,” on pain outcomes - can be incorporated across the continuum of pain research. We also describe cultural humility as a lifelong self-awareness process critical to ending generalizations and successfully applying antiracism research practices through the pain research continuum. In part-2 of the series, we describe research designs that perpetuate racism and provide reframes. Finally, in part-3, we emphasize the implications of an antiracism framework for research dissemination, community-engagement practices and diversity in research teams. Through this series, we invite the pain research community to share our commitment to the active process of antiracism, which involves both self-examination and re-evaluation of research practices shifting our collective work towards eliminating racialized injustices in our approach to pain research. Perspective: We call on the pain community to dismantle racism in our research practices. As the first paper of the 3-part series, we introduce dimensions of racism and its effect on pain inequities. We also describe the imperative role of cultural humility in adopting antiracism pain research practices.
  • Published In

  • Journal of Pain  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Morais CA; Aroke EN; Letzen JE; Campbell CM; Hood AM; Janevic MR; Mathur VA; Merriwether EN; Goodin BR; Booker SQ
  • Start Page

  • 878
  • End Page

  • 892
  • Volume

  • 23
  • Issue

  • 6