Activity 4: Disparities in Care: Special Populations in Pain Management

Program Overview

The perception and expression of pain is impacted by a number of patient characteristics including age, gender and ethnicity. It is important for family physicians to recognize these influences and understand how to elicit information to effectively diagnose and treat pain across the patient continuum. In addition, physician factors such as attitudes, beliefs, and expectations with regard to pain management can influence care in these populations.

Disparities in Care: Special Populations in Pain Management, the fourth activity in the Chronic Pain series, will provide insight into how age, gender and ethnicity impact the diagnosis and management of pain and discuss specific tools and strategies to facilitate pain management in these patient populations.

Intended Audience

This continuing medical education program is intended for family physicians and other healthcare professionals who manage pain management.

Learning Objectives

After completing this activity, participants will be better able to:

  • Recognize that certain patient populations may experience pain differently
  • Recognize that certain populations are underserved with regard to pain management
  • Describe population-based differences in pain perception, expression, response to treatment and pathophysiology
  • Identify external barriers to effective pain management in these populations
  • Apply this knowledge to improve pain management in these populations


Carolyn C. Lopez, MD
Professor, Department of Family Medicine
Rush Medical College
Chicago, IL

Planning Committee

Neil Skolnik, MD
Professor of Family and Community Medicine
Temple University School of Medicine
Family Medicine Residency Program
Abington Memorial Hospital
Abington, PA

Jeffrey T. Kirchner, DO, FAAFP
Associate Director – Family Medicine Residency Program
Lancaster General Hospital / Temple University School of Medicine
Lancaster, PA

Dawn A. Marcus, MD
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Pittsburgh, PA

Penny Tenzer, MD
Vice Chair, Director of the Residency Program
University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine
Chief of Service for Family Medicine
University of Miami Hospital
Miami, FL

CME Accreditation

This activity, Disparities in Care: Special Populations in Pain Management, has been reviewed and is acceptable for up to 1 Prescribed credit(s) by the American Academy of Family Physicians. This activity conforms to the AAFP criteria for evidence-based CME clinical content. AAFP accreditation begins December 1, 2008. Term of approval is for two years from this date with the option of yearly renewal. This activity has been renewed from December 1, 2010 through December 1, 2012.

The EB CME credit awarded for this activity was based on practice recommendations that were the most current with the strongest level of evidence available at the time this activity was approved. Since some clinical research is ongoing, the American Academy of Family Physicians recommends that learners verify sources and review these and other recommendations prior to implementation into practice.

The AAFP is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The American Academy of Family Physicians designates this education activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


Introduction and Opening Remarks
Module 1: Chronic Pain Management in Children
Module 2: Chronic Pain Management in Older Adults
Module 3: Chronic Pain Management in Women
Module 4: Chronic Pain Management in Minority Patients
Closing Remarks


It is the policy of the AAFP that all CME planning committee/faculty/authors/editors/staff disclose relationships with commercial entities upon nomination/invitation of participation. Disclosure documents are reviewed for potential conflict of interests and, if identified, they are resolved prior to confirmation of participation. Only these participants who have no conflict of interest or who agree to an identified resolution process prior to their participation were involved in this CME activity.

AAFP and MedEd Architects staffs have indicated that they have no relationships to disclose relating to the subject matter of the activity. Drs. Lopez, Skolnik, Kirchner, Marcus, and Tenzer have returned disclosure forms indicating that they have no financial interest in or affiliation with any commercial supporter or providers of any commercial services discussed in this educational material.

Please note that faculty is required to disclose all relevant relationships prior to the beginning of the activity.


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