Cross-sectional study examining the epidemiology of chronic pain in Nepal

Cassie Higgins (Lead / Corresponding author), Saurab Sharma, Inosha Bimali, Tim G. Hales, Paul A. Cameron, Blair H. Smith, Lesley Colvin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
55 Downloads (Pure)


Introduction: The World Health Organization recognizes chronic pain as a global public health concern; however, there is a bias towards research conducted in relatively affluent nations. There is a dearth of large-scale epidemiological studies in Nepal using rigorously validated, cross-culturally adapted instruments.

Objectives: The aim of this study was to examine the prevalence of both chronic pain and chronic pain of predominantly neuropathic origin and their associations with a range of sociodemographic and psychosocial characteristics.

Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of adults (≥18 years) in all households in Ranipani, Baluwa Village Development Committee, Nepal. All adults (n = 887) were approached, and those consenting, who met the inclusion criteria (n = 520, 58.6%), participated. Questionnaires validated in Nepali were used to examine several constructs: demographics; chronic pain; neuropathic pain; pain catastrophizing; resilience, pain intensity; pain interference; sleep disturbance; and depression.

Results: The point prevalence of chronic pain was 53.3% (n = 277). The point prevalence of chronic pain of predominantly neuropathic origin was 12.7% (n = 66). Chronic pain was associated with female gender, older age, and manual labour occupations. Using standardized scoring techniques, compared with available population estimates from other countries, those with chronic pain were associated with lower pain intensity and resilience scores and higher pain catastrophizing, pain interference, and depression scores.

Conclusion: These findings are broadly comparable to epidemiological studies from other countries, and these indicate areas for targeting interventions (eg, occupational and mental health). For comparison, more data are needed, from larger population samples in this region.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1067
Number of pages10
JournalPAIN Reports
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


  • chronic pain
  • neuropathic pain
  • epidemiology
  • Nepal
  • health measures
  • Health measures
  • Epidemiology
  • Chronic pain
  • Neuropathic pain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Cross-sectional study examining the epidemiology of chronic pain in Nepal'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this