Pain Research Center – Clinical

Robert N. Jamison, Ph.D. – Research

Over the past few years the focus of Dr. Jamison's clinical research efforts have been directed toward three areas of study: 1) Development and implementation of computer and information technology in the assessment and treatment of chronic pain patients; 2) Assessment of addiction risk potential among patients prescribed opioids for pain; and 3) Examination of psychopathology and personality differences as predictors of treatment outcome among chronic pain patients.

Areas of Research

Dr. Jamison is Co-Director of the Pain Research Center, and a Professor at Harvard Medical School with appointments in the Departments of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Psychiatry, and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. He is a clinical psychologist with over 30 years’ experience working with chronic pain patients and has enjoyed balancing clinical duties with research and teaching. His primary clinical responsibility is as Chief Psychologist at the Pain Management Center of Brigham and Women's Hospital. His duties include assessment and treatment of new patients referred to the Pain Center. He also screens for candidacy for opioid therapy and implantable devices and offers behavioral medicine services to patients and their families. Dr. Jamison has many related areas of research that have included developing valid and reliable electronic data entry software for pain patients, including a smart phone pain application, establishing valid screening tools for addiction risk in chronic opioid therapy, and creating computerized dynamic assessment of quality of life assessment of persons with chronic pain. He has also been an investigator on studies of disease management for chronic pain in primary care, craving and neuropsychological effects of long-term opioid use in chronic pain patients, the association between psychopathology and placebo analgesia in patients with back pain, use of cannabinoids for chronic pain patients and motivational compliance monitoring and substance abuse treatment for high risk chronic pain patients on opioid therapy. He has collaborated with many of the staff members in the Pain Management Center including Edgar Ross, MD, Edward Michna, MD JD, David Janfaza, MD, Sanjeet Narang, MD, Srdjan Nedeljkovic, MD, Elizabeth Scanlan, RNC MSN NP, Ajay Wasan, MD, Robert Edwards, Ph.D. and Michele Matthews, Pharm.D. as well as colleagues from other academic and private institutions. He recently also has been the principal investigator of the Opioid Prescription Evaluation and Risk Assessment (OPERA) study which has focused on reducing opioid misuse among chronic pain patients within primary care. He has responsibility of serving as a primary scientific mentor on three NIH K23 awards. He is on the Editorial Boards for Pain Medicine, Pain Practice, The Journal of Pain, MD Net Guide, Pain Research and Practice, Clinical Journal of Pain, and Pain: Clinical Updates. He has authored two books, a CD-ROM, and over 200 peer-reviewed articles, chapters, and abstracts in the areas of behavioral medicine, chronic pain, and opioid therapy.

Importance of Research Contributions

Dr. Jamison has been predominantly involved in clinical trials that have practical application for pain patients and their clinicians. His research efforts have been clinically based with direct applicability in the assessment and management of persons with chronic pain. He has gained recognition for his contributions in the creation of screening tools and software programs for use by busy practitioners. The universal acceptance of the Screener and Opioid Assessment for Patients with Pain – Revised (SOAPP-R) and the Current Opioid Misuse Measure (COMM) in pain management centers has added to his notoriety. He has also co-developed and validated the Interactive Computerized Quality of Life (ICQOL) and the Pain Electronic Calendar (PEC) programs. Dr. Jamison is committed to remaining active in clinical studies with the goal of continuing to improve the overall quality and outcomes of pain management among persons with acute and chronic pain.

Associations between momentary chronic pain intensity and subsequent behavioral anger expression as a function of trait anger-out levels.
Associations between momentary chronic pain intensity and subsequent behavioral anger expression as a function of trait anger-out levels. The greatest level of behavioral anger expression is observed among low trait anger-out individuals experiencing high pain intensity (Bruehl S, Liu, X, Burns J, Chont M, Jamison RN. Pain 2012).

Principal Investigator

Robert N Jamison

Robert N. Jamison, Ph.D. is Co-Director of the Pain Research Center and a Professor at Harvard Medical School with appointments in the Departments of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Psychiatry, and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

Select Recent Publications

  • Jamison RN, Edwards RR, Liu X, Ross E, Michna E, Warnick M, Wasan AD. “Effect of negative affect on outcome of an opioid therapy trial among low back pain patients.” Pain Practice 2012: (in press).
  • Bruehl S, Liu, X, Burns J, Chont M, Jamison RN. “Associations between daily chronic pain intensity, daily anger expression, and trait anger expressiveness: an ecological momentary assessment study.” Pain. 2012: 153:2352-2358.
  • Edwards RR, Mensing G, Cahalan C, Greenbaum S, Narang S, Belfer I, Schreiber KL, Cambell, C, Wasan, AD, Jamison RN. “Alteration in pain modulation in women with persistent post-lumpectomy pain: influence of catastrophizing.” J Pain Sym Manage 2012: (in press).
  • Jamison RN, Edwards RR. “Risk factor assessment for problematic use of opioids for chronic pain.” Clin Neuropsychologist. August 30, 2012. DOI:10.1080/13854046.2012.715204. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13854046.2012.715204.
  • Wasan AD, Ross EL, Michna E, Chibnik L, Greenfield S, Weiss R, Jamison RN. “Characterizing craving of prescription opioids in patients with chronic pain: a longitudinal outcomes trial.” J Pain 2012; 13:146-154.
  • Edwards RR, Wasan A, Michna E, Greenbaum S, Ross E, Jamison RN. “Elevated pain sensitivity in chronic pain patients at risk for opioid misuse.” J Pain 2011;9:953-963.
  • Jamison RN, Washington TA, Gulur P, Fanciullo GJ, Arscott JR, McHugo GJ, Baird JC. “Reliability of a three-dimensional pain mapping program.” Pain Med 2011;12:344-351.
  • Butler SF, Budman SH, Fanciullo GJ, Jamison RN. “Cross Validation of the Current Opioid Misuse Measure (COMM) to Monitor Chronic Pain Patients on Opioid Therapy.” Clin J Pain 2010;26:770-776.
  • Jamison RN, Ross EL, Michna E, Chen, LQ, Holcomb C, Wasan A. “Substance abuse treatment for high risk chronic pain patients on opioid therapy: a randomized trial.” Pain 2010; 150: 390-400.
  • Marceau LD, Link CL, Smith LD, Carolan SJ, Jamison RN. “In-clinic use of electronic pain diaries: barriers of implementation among pain physicians.” J Pain Symptom Manage 2010;40:391-404.