Medical Psychology – F. Cal Robinson, PsyD, MSSP

Orthopaedic & Spine Center offers Medical Psychology services to patients who suffer from chronic pain.

The field of Medical Psychology considers the psychological parameters and attributes of medical condition(s) which affect the patient. This is especially helpful for those who suffer from chronic pain, as these patients frequently experience stress, depression, anger, frustration and hopelessness about their condition. Dr. Cal Robinson effectively treats those symptoms, affecting change in the patient’s overall well-being.

All psychotherapies attempt to help the patient accept the realities of having chronic pain while also addressing cognitive distortions, such as catastrophizing, minimizing or denying positives, magnifying negatives, all-or-nothing thinking, etc., These self-destructive thoughts and behaviors can worsen chronic pain and exacerbate other symptoms. Dr. Robinson attempts to replace these with rational and adaptive-thinking skills and behaviors.

Because most are learned and ingrained as children, replacing unhealthy behaviors with those that foster well-being and a long-term positive attitude takes consistent practice for the patient.  A lifetime of negativity  will not be changed in one day or one week.  However, those who commit to the work can learn new methods for managing everyday stresses and replace negative thoughts with those that engender health.

Multiple studies have shown that Psychotherapy, when used in conjunction with appropriate medical care, results in more effective pain management for patients who have chronic pain.  Psychotherapy is also an alternative/adjunct to opioid pain medications, though considered appropriate treatment for some patients, may be addictive and have many dangerous side effects.  The physicians in the OSC Interventional Pain Management Department believe in an Interdisciplinary approach to treating chronic pain, which includes Psychotherapy.

Dr. Robinson uses variety of psycho-therapeutic treatments modalities, which include:

OSC employs a certified Psychometrist, Joshua Willson, who administers a variety of psychological testing for our patients.  Dr. Robinson interprets the tests and reports findings to help determine which medical treatments may be helpful/harmful for chronic pain patients, such as Addiction/Abuse Risk Testing. Psychological testing is available for patients about to undergo surgery, those with workplace injuries or those who seek to have a Spinal Cord Stimulator permanently implanted.