The function of just-world beliefs in a sample of pain clinic attendees

Joanna McParland, Christina Knussen, Michael Serpell, Christopher Eccleston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


A growing field of investigation suggests that social justice appraisals have implications for adjustment to chronic pain conditions. One strand of research indicates that the ability to perceive justice in one’s own life and in the world can confer benefits on the experience of pain in experimental and support group environments. This study extended previous research to investigate the role of justice beliefs in a clinical environment, where adjustment to pain can be particularly problematic, in order to learn more about the circumstances under which these beliefs are more or less adaptive in the pain experience. In total 123 pain clinic attendees completed self-report measures of personal and general just-world beliefs; acceptance of pain (activity engagement/pain willingness); pain severity; disability and depression. Somewhat contrary to expectations, correlation analyses revealed that the personal but not the general just world-belief was weakly associated with lower depression scores, and both beliefs were unrelated to disability and pain intensity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-271
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pain Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • chronic pain conditions
  • just-world beliefs
  • support groups


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