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Telehealth Pain Self-Management for Employed Adults (E-TIPS)

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Know the risks and potential benefits of clinical studies and talk to your health care provider before participating. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT04248725
Recruitment Status : Recruiting
First Posted : January 30, 2020
Last Update Posted : July 28, 2022
Department of Health and Human Services
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Dawn Ehde, University of Washington

Brief Summary:
The E-TIPS trial will evaluate an evidence-based, telehealth pain self-management intervention compared to standard care (a waitlist) for chronic pain in adults with physical disabilities who are employed. Participants from anywhere in the US will be randomized to either E-TIPS, a cognitive-behavioral pain self-management intervention delivered by telephone, or a waitlist control. Outcomes, including pain interference, will be assessed at baseline, mid-treatment, post-treatment, and 6-month follow up.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Chronic Pain Brain Injuries, Traumatic Multiple Sclerosis Spinal Cord Injuries Amputation Behavioral: E-TIPS Not Applicable

Detailed Description:

Chronic pain is one of the most prevalent, disabling, and persistent comorbid conditions associated with physical disabilities, including limb loss, spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury, and chronic neurodegenerative conditions such as multiple sclerosis. One half to two-thirds of adults with these conditions experience chronic pain. In addition to being associated with disability, depression, sleep disruption, and physical inactivity, chronic pain has deleterious social and societal costs, including job loss and reliance on long-term disability programs.

The E-TIPS intervention aims to address common barriers encountered by employed individuals with chronic pain. People with physical disabilities may be offered face-to-face delivery of pain self-management interventions, in clinical settings during business hours, which limits access to people with physical disabilities who are employed. These individuals must take time off work to attend multiple treatment sessions, overcome transportation difficulties, and contend with the stigma of seeking behavioral healthcare. Telehealth interventions, such as E-TIPS, have considerable potential for expanding the reach of pain self-management interventions for employed people with physical disabilities.

The proposed randomized (1:1), single-blind parallel-group trial will compare the E-TIPS telehealth pain self-management intervention to a waitlist control in adults with physical disabilities and chronic pain who are employed. Outcomes will be assessed before randomization, mid-treatment (6 weeks post-randomization), post-treatment (10 weeks post-randomization; primary endpoint), and 6-month follow up (25 weeks post-randomization). Participants will be recruited from across the US, including at University of Washington (UW) and Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (SRALab).

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 200 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Intervention Model Description: A randomized (1:1), single blind parallel-group trial comparing a telehealth pain self-management intervention, adapted to address employment issues (E-TIPS), to a waitlist control in adults with physical disabilities and chronic pain who are employed.
Masking: Single (Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Efficacy of a Telehealth Pain Self-Management Intervention in Employed Adults With Physical Disability: A Randomized Controlled Trial
Actual Study Start Date : March 2, 2020
Estimated Primary Completion Date : March 31, 2023
Estimated Study Completion Date : September 1, 2023

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: E-TIPS
The E-TIPS intervention is based upon a cognitive-behavioral intervention for pain that was developed for and shown to be effective in people with chronic pain and a physical disability such as the conditions of interest in this study. Eight, 45-minute telephone sessions will be delivered by a clinician. A patient workbook will be used to facilitate skill acquisition and rehearsal in and outside of sessions. The intervention includes education about the role of unhelpful thoughts, particularly pain catastrophizing, and unhelpful pain coping behaviors; instruction in how to identify and change unhelpful or negative thinking about pain; utilization of helpful coping strategies; relaxation techniques; behavioral activation including setting goals for physical activation, activity pacing and scheduling; and coping with pain flare-ups. Each session includes a brief relaxation exercise. Participants receive digital audio recordings of relaxation exercises to practice at home.
Behavioral: E-TIPS
Chronic pain self-management strategies for employed individuals with physical disabilities

No Intervention: Usual care
Participants assigned to the control intervention will continue to pursue standard care (a waitlist). Waitlist control subjects will be offered the opportunity to receive the intervention following completion of the final 6-month follow up outcome assessment.

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Change in pain interference [ Time Frame: Baseline (week 0), 12 weeks (post-treatment),and 38 week (6-month follow up) post-randomization ]
    Patient-reported pain interference using the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) Pain Interference Scale-6-item. Each item is scored 1 (not at all) to 5 (very much), yielding a raw score between 6 and 30, which is converted to a standard t-score. Higher scores indicate greater self-reported pain interference.

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Change in pain self-efficacy [ Time Frame: Baseline (week 0), 10 weeks (post-treatment),and 25 week (6-month follow up) post-randomization ]
    Patient-reported pain self-efficacy for managing pain using the University of Washington Pain Self-Efficacy Scale-6 item. Each item is scored 1 (not at all) to 5 (very much), yielding a raw score between 6 and 30, which is converted to a standard t-score. Higher scores indicate greater patient-reported self-efficacy for managing pain.

  2. Change in average pain intensity [ Time Frame: Baseline (week 0), 10 weeks (post-treatment),and 25 week (6-month follow up) post-randomization ]
    0-10 Numerical Pain Rating Scale of average pain intensity in past week (0 = no pain, 10 = worst pain imaginable). Higher scores indicate higher levels of self-reported pain intensity.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • Self-reported physical disability
  • Chronic pain defined as daily pain of ≥ 3 months duration and ≥ 3 average pain intensity in the past week on a 0-10 numerical rating scale
  • Experiences pain for more than 45 out of the past 90 days (defined as 50% of the time or greater)
  • Reads, speaks, and understands English
  • Has access to and is able to communicate over the telephone with our without assistive devices
  • Is employed, working 15-20 hours per week or more, on average, or earning in excess of substantial gainful activity (approximately $1200/month)

We will enroll individuals with a range of physical disabilities to maximize the generalizability of the results, because there is no evidence that the type of disability affects responsiveness to the proposed treatment

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Under the age of 18
  • Cannot read, speak, or understand English
  • No self-reported physical disability
  • Currently unemployed
  • Plans to retire or leave employment within the study period
  • Working fewer than 15-20 hours per week, on average, and earning less than approximately $1200 per month
  • Cannot communicate or complete assessments over the phone or internet
  • Chronic pain defined as daily pain of ≤ 3 months duration and ≤ 3 average pain intensity in the past week on a 0-10 numerical rating scale
  • Experiences pain for fewer than 45 out of the past 90 days (defined as 50% of the time or less)
  • Currently participating in another pain study or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) study

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT04248725

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Contact: Carolyn C Green 206-616-9801

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United States, Washington
University of Washington Recruiting
Seattle, Washington, United States, 98104
Contact: Carolyn Green, BFA    206-616-9801   
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Washington
Department of Health and Human Services
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Principal Investigator: Dawn M Ehde, PhD University of Washington
Anand P, Ben-Shalom Y. The promise of better economic outcomes for workers with musculoskeletal conditions. Roosevelt House: Public Policy Institute at Hunter College.2017.
Social Security Administration. Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 2015. Washington, DC2016.

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Responsible Party: Dawn Ehde, Professor, School of Medicine: Rehabilitation Medicine:Psychology, University of Washington Identifier: NCT04248725    
Other Study ID Numbers: STUDY00005686
7258 ( Other Grant/Funding Number: DHHS )
First Posted: January 30, 2020    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: July 28, 2022
Last Verified: July 2022
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: Yes
Plan Description: All collected IPD will be deposited in a digital data repository. Direct and indirect identifiers will be removed to minimize disclosure risk. The data will be deposited with the digital repository of the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR).
Supporting Materials: Study Protocol
Statistical Analysis Plan (SAP)
Informed Consent Form (ICF)
Clinical Study Report (CSR)
Analytic Code
Time Frame: on or or before October 1, 2024
Access Criteria:

Data will be stored in a manner that enables retrieval and use at no cost to users. Each data set will use a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) for future reference and citation. Data submitted to ICPSR, will fit within the scope of the ICPSR Collection Development Policy found at this site:

ICPSR will make the research data from this project available to the broader social science research community. These files, in which direct and indirect identifiers have been removed to minimize disclosure risk, will be accessible directly through the ICPSR Web site. After agreeing to Terms of Use, users with an ICPSR MyData account may download the data at no cost.

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Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: No
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No
Keywords provided by Dawn Ehde, University of Washington:
chronic pain
cognitive therapy
mindfulness meditation
activation skills
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Multiple Sclerosis
Brain Injuries
Spinal Cord Injuries
Brain Injuries, Traumatic
Chronic Pain
Wounds and Injuries
Demyelinating Autoimmune Diseases, CNS
Autoimmune Diseases of the Nervous System
Nervous System Diseases
Demyelinating Diseases
Autoimmune Diseases
Immune System Diseases
Brain Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Craniocerebral Trauma
Trauma, Nervous System
Neurologic Manifestations
Spinal Cord Diseases