Objective: Chronic pain such as arthritis has a significant impact on occupational performance in the workplace that contributes to decreased productivity, reduced rates of employment, personal and societal economic costs. In commemoration of the 20th anniversary of WORK, a scoping review was conducted to understand the knowledge base on chronic pain. The purpose of this was to examine and describe WORK's contribution to the literature relevant for rehabilitation professionals such as occupational therapists to improve work related outcomes for persons experiencing chronic pain. Method: The method employed the use of historical, citation and dimension analyses of assessment and intervention articles. Results: Of the 30 articles identified in WORK, the historical analysis of their scope indicated an international representation of authors and a greater emphasis on quantitative study designs. The citation analysis revealed that the articles in WORK drew heavily on medical literature to inform their studies. The dimensional analysis of the assessment and intervention articles applied an occupational lens of self-care, productivity and leisure, to draw upon the Occupational Competence Model and identified that the majority of papers focused on 2 or more dimensions of the person, environment and occupation. Conclusions: WORK has contributed to the knowledge base of assessment and intervention approaches that inform work rehabilitation strategies for individuals with chronic pain. To advance its knowledge base for the rehabilitation and management of chronic pain, WORK is encouraged to include more prevention and multidimensional interventions articles, as well as articles that contain multidimensional assessment tools that address both clinical and outcome assessments of chronic pain. Additionally internal dialogue should be encouraged within WORK so that new authors build on previous submissions and increase the impact and quality of research on chronic pain as it pertains to work.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/drlynn/61/