Types of Trauma and Self-Reported Pain That Limits Functioning in Different-Aged Cohorts

Ginny Sprang, Heather M. Bush, Ann L. Coker, Candace J. Brancato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


There is a growing body of literature that childhood or adult trauma exposure can have lifelong mental and physical health impacts. In this large cross-sectional analysis, authors investigated combinations of trauma types and pain resulting in functional limitations among women recruited into a statewide health registry. Combinations of traumas such as child physical abuse (CPA), child sexual abuse (CSA), and adult violence were hypothesized to be associated with greater likelihood of limiting pain and earlier symptom onset, relative to women with no or singular trauma exposures. Pain prevalence rates (PRs) and adjusted prevalence rate ratios (aPRRs) were highest among women experiencing multiple forms of violence (43.3% among women disclosing CPA, CSA, and adult violence; aPRR = 2.06, p <.001), intermediate for women experiencing CPA or CSA yet no adult violence (37.0%; aPRR = 1.76, p <.001), and lower among women experiencing adult violence only (27.1%; aPRR = 1.29, p <.001), relative to women never experiencing violence (20.7%). As hypothesized, the effect of combinations of trauma on chronic pain was consistently greatest for those reporting limiting pain at younger ages. Implications include the need to identify combinations of traumatic events across the life span, and to intervene early to reduce the impact of trauma on health and functioning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5953-5975
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Issue number23-24
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: The project described was supported by the NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through grant number UL1TR001998.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2017.


  • pain that limits functioning
  • trauma
  • violence exposure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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