ObjectiveThe aim was to investigate the concurrent and longitudinal associations of chronic pain with behavioral and emotional problems in toddlers, as it is not known which comes first in life.MethodsThe study was embedded in the Generation R Study, a prospective population-based cohort study. Parents of 3,751 toddlers completed questionnaires of their child's health and development. Behavioral and emotional problems were measured at 1.5 and 3 years, chronic pain was measured at 2 and 3 years.ResultsThere were concurrent associations between chronic pain and internalizing problems, e.g. anxiety/depression symptoms. However, chronic pain did not precede the development of new behavioral and emotional problems. Also, behavioral and emotional problems did not precede new-onset chronic pain, except for somatic symptoms, which increased the likelihood of chronic pain.ConclusionsChronic pain was associated with concurrent internalizing problems. Somatic complaints were not only concurrently related to pain but also predicted new-onset pain.

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doi.org/10.1093/jpepsy/jsr122, hdl.handle.net/1765/68068
Journal of Pediatric Psychology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Wolff, N.J, Darlington, A.-S.E, Hunfeld, J.A.M, Jaddoe, V.W.V, Hofman, A, Raat, H, … Tiemeier, H.W. (2012). Concurrent and longitudinal bidirectional relationships between Toddlers' chronic pain and mental health: The generation R study. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 37(5), 546–556. doi:10.1093/jpepsy/jsr122