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Changing Common Beliefs about Pain


Development of a new approach to managing back pain, called Cognitive Functional Therapy, has helped Professor Peter O’Sullivan achieve success that’s now also seen him earn Curtin’s highest honour for academic staff: the title of John Curtin Distinguished Professor. The new therapy approach targets factors, such as negative beliefs and pain-related fear and distress, to help sufferers escape the vicious cycle of pain and disability. The challenge Professor O’Sullivan now sees before him is reorienting physiotherapy practice towards this more effective way of dealing with what is an all-too-common problem.

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