About The Lab

The lab has been funded, in the order of several million dollars, from a variety of national (e.g., CIHR) and provincial (e.g., Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation) organizations. Our research focus has been on a variety of areas, mostly related to health psychology. A list of publications can be found here. Some of the areas of central research emphasis are outlined below.

Pain Assessment and Management in Older Persons

Our lab is internationally renowned for developing and validating innovative approaches to the pain assessment of older persons who present with dementias and serious limitations in ability to communicate. As an example, the Pain Assessment Checklist for Seniors with Limited Ability to Communicate (PACSLAC and PACSLAC-II), developed in the lab, has been translated in several languages and has been used around the world. As a second example, knowledge translation work has involved the development of a pain self-management program for seniors, which has been made available through the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP). This work is presented in a book published by IASP. We have also studied cognitive behavioural pain management interventions for older persons.

Theoretical Issues in the Communication of Pain

Together with Kenneth D. Craig of the University of British Columbia our lab has focused on the formulation of theoretical frameworks for understanding the process of pain communication. This work has attracted considerable international attention and is summarized in: Hadjistavropoulos, Craig et al. (2011). A biopsychosocial formulation of pain communication.  Psychological Bulletin,137, 910-939.

Fear of Falling and Anxiety in Older Persons

In recent years we have been heavily involved in the study of fear of falling in relation to gait performance and falls sustained by older persons. Our lab is equipped with highly sophisticated computerized electronic equipment designed to assess gait performance in relation to anxiety levels experienced by older persons.

Ethics and Professional Standards

We have published extensively in the area of ethical issues in psychology and health care in general. A frequent collaborator is David C. Malloy of the Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies.

Other areas in Health Psychology

We have conducted investigations in other areas of health psychology including psychological attitudes that might influence dieting success and malingering in musculoskeletal pain.