Several studies have investigated clinical, psychological, and patient characteristic variables associated with post-total knee arthroplasty pain; of those studies, many have cited pain catastrophizing as a potential predictor of postsurgical pain. The aim of this study was to quantify the effect pain catastrophizing has on post-TKA pain via a meta-analysis of related studies published 2013-2017. Nine articles involving 1,077 patients were selected based on requirements of pre-surgical catastrophizing measure and post-surgical pain measure, data reporting, and surgery type. Reported measures for all included studies were used to calculate effect size for pain catastrophizing as a predictor of post-TKA pain. Moderators of pain and pain catastrophizing were separated to determine if significance was influenced by type of catastrophizing or pain measure; type of catastrophizing measure included the Pain Catastrophizing Scale and Coping Strategies Questionnaire, and pain measures included the WOMAC pain scale, Brief Pain Inventory, and 5-m walk test. Pain as a function of BMI, age, and pre-surgical pain was also investigated. The meta-analysis concluded that pain catastrophizing is a significant predictor of post-TKA pain. BMI, age, and pre-surgical pain are all significant predictors of pain, as well. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction is explored as a clinical technique for resolving pain catastrophizing to potentially diminish pain following TKA. Future studies should investigate pain catastrophizing as a predictor of postsurgical pain for additional surgery types.

Semester/Year of Award

Spring 2018


Matthew P. Winslow

Mentor Professional Affiliation


Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level