Quantitative evaluation of an instrument to identify chronic pain in HIV-infected individuals

Academic Article


  • A method to rapidly identify the presence of chronic pain would enhance the care of HIV-infected individuals, but such an instrument has not been assessed in this population to date. We assessed the construct validity of the two-question Brief Chronic Pain Questionnaire (BCPQ) in HIV-infected patients by assessing the association between BCPQ responses and known correlates of chronic pain. Participants in the University of Alabama Center for AIDS Research Network of Integrated Clinical Systems cohort completed the BCPQ, along with the EuroQOL to assess physical function, the PHQ-9 to assess depression, and the PHQ-anxiety module to assess anxiety. Among 100 participants, 25% were female, the mean age was 45 (SD 12), 63% were African American, 27% were publicly insured, the median CD4+ T cell count was 572 cells/mm3 (IQR 307-788), and 82% had an undetectable viral load. Participants with chronic pain were more likely to have impaired mobility (43% vs. 12%, p=0.001), difficulty with usual activities (47% vs. 12%, p<0.001), lower overall health state (70 vs. 84, p=0.002), pain today (80% vs. 27%, p<0.001), depression (30% vs. 15%, p=0.10), and anxiety (43% vs. 10%, p<0.001) than those without chronic pain. This study provides preliminary evidence for the BCPQ as a brief questionnaire to identify the presence of chronic pain in HIV care settings.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Merlin JS; Westfall AO; Chamot E; Saag M; Walcott M; Ritchie C; Kertesz S
  • Start Page

  • 623
  • End Page

  • 627
  • Volume

  • 31
  • Issue

  • 6