The Pain Picture- Exploring Complex Pain States

Instructor: Dr. Tim Beames

Date: Feb. 19 & 20, 2019

Where: The Dana on Mission Bay, San Diego, California

Fee: $500

1 Seat Left! 

Approved for 1.0 CEUs or 10 hrs by the California Physical Therapy Association.

What is this course about?

The last few decades have brought about a wealth of discovery in pain sciences. Clinicians and patients are recognising the value in bringing findings from research with imaging; lab techniques; and observational and behavioural experiments to better understand pain in a clinical setting. 

Pain is a complex perceptual experience, not a sensation. A broad framework is required to understand the place of biological and behavioural responses that occur when someone experiences pain. Inviting philosophical thinking allows us to go some way to link these bodily mechanisms with the self. 

This 2-day workshop explores complex pain states by considering the dynamic interactions of brain, body and world. It uses Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) as a reference point to understand the experience and the perception of the person in pain. During the workshop participants will be introduced, through videos and case studies, to patient perspectives of living with pain and their personal pain journeys. There will be discussions and debates to allow a thorough reflection of the picture of pain, dissecting pain models and considering concepts such as vulnerability/susceptibility and tolerance/resilience and their relevance to the person in pain and their wellbeing. Participants will also design and develop appropriate treatment programs for complex pain states with an updated way of thinking about pain.

This course is lecture format.


Workshop objectives

After this course you will: 

  1. Be aware of past and present models of pain including embodied cognition, enactivism and predictive processing to explain a pain experience
  2. Understand the merits for different pain models and be able to evaluate the differences between them
  3. Be able to perform basic bedside body perceptual tests (including two-point discrimination and localisation of touch) for the person in pain
  4. Be able to consider the rationale for appropriate treatment (including a critique of your own biases) and how this fits into different pain paradigms
  5. Be able to create an appropriate and individualised treatment program for a person suffering from persistent and complex pain



Feb. 19

8:30am – Check in

9am – 10:30am: Introduction/landscape of the course (Pain quiz and pain fact finding, Patient video, Basic pain overview).

10:30am – 10:45am: Break

10:45am – 12:15pm: Historical pain models (Specificity theory/tissue pathology models, Pattern theory—gate control theory of pain, Neuromatrix & saliency, Embodied cognition models—mature organism model). 

12:15pm—1:15pm: Lunch

1:15pm—2:45pm: Predictive processing—developing a new model for pain (Top-down vs bottom-up processing, Prediction errors & minimalization, Generative models, Precision weighting, Context dependency, Active & perceptual inference, Entropic states).

2:45pm—3pm: Break

3pm—4:30pm: Exploring body perception (Practical 1st vs 3rd person experiences, Rubber hand illusion theory & practical, Body perception—agency & ownership).


Feb. 20

9am—10:30am: Pain debate- The complexity in complex pain states (CRPS, LBP, FMS).

10:30am—10:45am: Break

10:45am—12:15pm: Integrating pain models into the clinical assessment (Bedside assessment tools, Interpreting responses in regard of predictive processing model)

12:15pm—1:15pm: Lunch

1:15pm—2:45pm: Introducing treatment options (Graded exposure & dose titration, Vulnerability & susceptibility, Variability & Flexibility).

2:45pm—3pm: Break

3pm—4:30pm: Patient case studies (Summing up pain models – feasible, realistic, testable

About Tim Beames, MSc, BSc (Hons), MCSP

Tim is a chartered physiotherapist with an interest in complex pain problems and the effect that this can have on someone's ability to function in their daily life and their general wellbeing. 

Tim graduated from Brunel University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physiotherapy. His interest in pain was stimulated by a reflection that more could be done for people with persistent pain problems and many hours of reading whilst commuting in London. This led to him undertaking a Master of Science degree in Pain: Science and Society at King's College London. 

He teaches  post-graduate courses for healthcare professionals in the UK, Europe, America and  Australia both independently and for the Neuro Orthopaedic Institute (NOI) - a progressive and dynamic group of educators. These courses include Graded Motor Imagery and Explain Pain both of which have strong research to endorse their approach for helping people with pain. Tim is also the co-author of the Graded Motor Imagery Handbook alongside Lorimer Moseley, David Butler and Tom Giles. Tim is regularly invited to speak at national and international conferences on pain related topics.


50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.