PIRE Publication - Pain Management Experiences and the Acceptability of Cognitive Behavioral Strategies Among American Indians and Alaska Natives


The purpose of this project was to explore the chronic pain experience and establish cultural appropriateness of cognitive behavioral pain management (CBPM) techniques in American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs). A semistructured interview guide was used with three focus groups of AI/AN patients in the U.S. Southwest and Pacific Northwest regions to explore pain and CBPM in AI/ANs. The participants provided rich qualitative data regarding chronic pain and willingness to use CBPM. Themes included empty promises and health care insufficiencies, individuality, pain management strategies, and suggestions for health care providers.Results suggest that there is room for improvement in chronic pain care among AI/ANs and that CBPM would likely be a viable and culturally appropriate approach for chronic pain management. This research provides evidence that CBPM is culturally acceptable and in alignment with existing traditional AI/AN strategies for coping and healing.


Haozous, E. A.
Doorenbos, A. Z.
Stoner, S.