Pain is a major population-health problem, especially among older adults.  A large proportion of older persons report suffering from chronic pain.  According to the Institute of Medicine, the number is greater than those affected by heart disease, cancer, and diabetes combined.  The economic burden of pain is enormous, and pain is unmistakably a determinant of quality of life for individuals.  Research has indicated that pain is the single most highly reported health problem among older adults and one of the most commons reason for health care utilization.  Beyond examining the demographic composition of pain, this stream investigates population trends in prevalence, links between pain and disability, individual pain trajectories, life expectancies with and without pain, and other aspects of pain that can be best examined through demographic methods.

Check out the video highlight, “A global study of pain prevalence across 52 countries,” HERE.

Funded By:

Social Causes and Consequences of Chronic Pain, is funded through Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and runs from 2021-2026.

The Demography of Chronic Pain: A Population Approach to Pain Trends, Pain Disparities, and Pain-Related Disability and Death is funded by National Institutes of Health (NIA) and runs from 2020-2025.

Initiative for The Demography of Pain is a SSHRC internal Mount Saint Vincent University grant and runs from 2018-2020.

Pain and Population Health: A Planning Grant to Foster Ongoing Collaborations and Develop a Project Grant with a Focus on the Social Determinants of the Association between Pain and Disability. Principal Investigator was funded by the Canadian Institute of Health Research from 2018-2019.

A Workshop to Explore Current Challenges in Research on the Association Between Chronic Pain and Disability was funded internally by Mount Saint Vincent University from 2018-19.

Publications and Works in Progress:

Click HERE for Pain publications.

Selected Highlighted Publications:

Zachary Zimmer and Anna Zajacova. 2018. Persistent, consistent and extensive: The trend of increasing pain prevalence in older Americans. Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences. Click here for supplementary information.

Pain and Disablement by Zachary Zimmer and Sara Rubin, Chapter 2 in Jagger, C., Saito, Y., Yokota, R. T. D. C., Van Oyen, H., & Robine, J. M. (2020). International handbook of health expectancies. E. M. Crimmins (Ed.). Springer International Publishing.

Zachary Zimmer and Sara Rubin.  Life expectancy with and without pain in the U.S. elderly Population.  Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences.  71(9): 1171-1176. doi: 10.1093/Gerona/ glw028.