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PainDynamics: Research on the dynamics of attention bias for pain in daily life.

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "PainDynamics" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 4365

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Luxembourg [LU]
 Project website
 Total cost 172˙800 €
 EC max contribution 172˙800 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2015
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-09-01   to  2018-08-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

Chronic pain is a major health care problem in Europe which results in huge economic costs. Available cognitive-affective accounts of pain, distress and disability suggest that attention plays a pivotal role in the development and maintenance of pain problems. In particular the presence of an attentional bias towards pain-related information (AB) is thought to initiate or exacerbate pain problems in chronic pain patients. Despite the intuitive appeal of this idea, findings are inconsistent. In the current project I argue that inconsistent findings in AB research are due to both conceptual and methodological limitations of previous research. From a conceptual standpoint, I argue that the presence of inconsistent findings is owe to the conceptualization of AB as a stable trait-like or habit-like process. Instead, I propose to conceptualize AB as a temporally dynamic, fluctuating and enfolding phenomenon that varies over time and across contexts. From a methodological standpoint, I furthermore argue that varying empirical support may also be due to limited ecological validity in AB research. I propose that the ecological validity could be increased by using somatosensory stimuli instead of linguistic stimuli and by investigating AB for pain-related information and key variables in everyday situations instead of in a single laboratory session. In the current proposal, I will address these conceptual and methodological challenges via (1) the development and validation of a novel ecologically valid paradigm to assess AB, and (2) an investigation of key hypotheses concerning the role of AB in chronic pain using a novel ecologically valid approach. Increased understanding of the occurrence, dynamics and implications of AB in varying daily life contexts represents an important step in advancing theoretical models on chronic pain. Furthermore, current findings may also help to attune clinical interventions to the needs of each individual pain patient.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2017 Dimitri M.L. Van Ryckeghem
The interference of pain with task performance: Increasing ecological validity in research
published pages: , ISSN: 1877-8860, DOI: 10.1016/j.sjpain.2017.04.001
Scandinavian Journal of Pain 16/1 2019-07-30
2018 Dimitri Van Ryckeghem Geert Crombez
Pain and Attention: Towards a Motivational Account
published pages: , ISSN: , DOI:
Motivational perspectives on chronic pain : theory, research, and practice 2019-07-30
2018 Dimitri M. L. Van Ryckeghem, Stefaan Van Damme, Tine Vervoort
Does attention bias modification training impact on task performance in the context of pain: An experimental study in healthy participants
published pages: e0200629, ISSN: 1932-6203, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0200629
PLOS ONE 13/7 2019-07-30
2018 Jemma Todd, Dimitri M.L. van Ryckeghem, Louise Sharpe, Geert Crombez
Attentional bias to pain-related information: a meta-analysis of dot-probe studies
published pages: 1-18, ISSN: 1743-7199, DOI: 10.1080/17437199.2018.1521729
Health Psychology Review 2019-07-30
2018 Tine Vervoort, Kai Karos, Dan Johnson, Stefan Sütterlin, Dimitri Van Ryckeghem
Parental emotion and pain control behaviour when faced with childʼs pain
published pages: 1, ISSN: 0304-3959, DOI: 10.1097/j.pain.0000000000001402
PAIN 2019-07-30
2018 Dimitri ML Van Ryckeghem, Stefaan Van Damme, Christopher Eccleston, Geert Crombez
The efficacy of attentional distraction and sensory monitoring in chronic pain patients: A meta-analysis
published pages: 16-29, ISSN: 0272-7358, DOI: 10.1016/j.cpr.2017.10.008
Clinical Psychology Review 59 2019-07-30

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