The Efficacy of Fixed-Role Therapy With Three Chronic Pain Patients

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

William Goggin

Advisor Department



Three chronic pain patients at a Veterans Administration Medical Center in the southeastern part of the United States were treated over a six week period using Kelly's Fixed-Role therapy in a multiple baseline design. Daily pain severity measures were collected from each subject for six weeks, during which each subject was treated for approximately three weeks. The West Haven-Yale Multidimensional Pain Inventory (WHYMPI) was administered at five times: pre-treatment, post-treatment, and at a one-month, three-month, and six-month follow-up. Although the data did not reveal significant changes or trends in the subjects' pain, social activities, or daily activities; anecdotal data, voluntarily sent by two of the patients, suggested that there had been significant changes in their lives, and their living situations. Reasons for this discrepancy between real life changes and the lack of changes observed on the WHYMPI are discussed.