What is a Psychosocial Evaluation & Why am I supposed to Have One?

“Oh great, the doctor thinks this is all in my head!”

That is the typical reaction of a patient given a prescription for a psychosocial evaluation.
To add insult to injury, some patients with chronic pain have already had doctors in the past suggest that their pain was not real.

As you probably know by now, we tell it like it is around here.

Freankly, if we thought your pain was not real , or that you were faking, we would tell you so. And we would not send you for a psychosocial evaluation – We would send you on your way.
So, does this mean we think you’re mentally ill? Crazy?


(Even though you may feel like you’re going crazy sometimes!)

Here is what we know:

  1. Chronic pain is very stressful.
  2. Stress usually makes chronic pain worse.
  3. Both chronic pain and stress make life more difficult for you.

The purpose of a psychosocial evaluation is to find out:

Have you been affected by your chronic pain?

What kinds of other stresses to you have in your life that could be making your pain more difficult to deal with?

In addition to our medical treatment, is there anything that can be done to reduce your stress and/or help you cope with you pain more effectively?

The last thing we want you to do is add to your stress. If you have any other questions about the evaluation, please ask us.