Geert Crombez

Geert Crombez
Ghent University | UGhent · Department of Experimental Clinical and Health Psychology

PhD

About

599
Publications
199,332
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Introduction
Professor of Health Psychology (Ghent University). Research relates to the symptom percpetion (most often pain) and the impact of chronic illness on daily functioning and quality of life.

Publications

Publications (599)
Preprint
Introduction: Ontologies, i.e. formal ways to represent knowledge into a particular domain, have the potential to transform the field of health promotion and digital interventions However, few researchers in the domain of physical activity (PA) are familiar with ontologies, and the field can be difficult to navigate due to differences in quality. T...
Article
Objectives: Neurological complications including pain are common after treatment for breast cancer. This prospective study investigated the symptoms, intensity and interference of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuro-pathy. (CIPN) in the feet and hands compared to surgery- and radiation-induced neuropathy in the breast and upper arm. Methods: C...
Article
Full-text available
Attentional processes are involved in the experience of itch and pain. They interrupt task performance (ie, attentional interference) or bias allocation of attention toward the somatosensory stimulation, that is, attentional bias (AB). Research on AB toward pain is mostly focused on stimuli with short durations; hampering generalization to tonic pa...
Article
Full-text available
Objective The tendency to flexibly adjust goals that are hindered by chronic illness is related to indicators of wellbeing. However, cognitive flexibility is often impaired in persons with an acquired brain injury (ABI), possibly affecting the ability to flexibly adjust goals. In this study we examined whether cognitive flexibility is positively re...
Article
Full-text available
Background To improve the treatment of painful Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy (DPN) and associated co-morbidities, a better understanding of the pathophysiology and risk factors for painful DPN is required. Using harmonised cohorts (N = 1230) we have built models that classify painful versus painless DPN using quality of life (EQ5D), lifestyle (smo...
Article
Full-text available
Background Many theoretical frameworks have been used in order to understand health behaviors such as physical activity, sufficient sleep, healthy eating habits, etc. In most research studies, determinants within these frameworks are assessed only once and thus are considered as stable over time, which leads to rather ‘static’ health behavior chang...
Data
The International Affective Picture System (IAPS; Center for the Study of Emotion and Attention [CSEA], 1995) is a set of pictures that is widely used in experimental research on emotion and attention. In this study, the normative ratings of a subset of the IAPS were compared with the ratings from a Flemish sample. Eighty Flemish first-year psychol...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Mobile health (mHealth) interventions may help adolescents adopt healthy lifestyles. However, attrition in these interventions is high. Overall, there is a lack of research on nonusage attrition in adolescents, particularly regarding the role of socioeconomic status (SES). Objective: The aim of this study was to focus on the role of...
Preprint
Neuropathic pain is difficult to treat, and an understanding of the risk factors for its onset and resolution is warranted. This study aimed to develop and externally validate two clinical risk models to predict onset and resolution of chronic neuropathic pain. Participants of Generation Scotland: Scottish Family Health Study (GS; general Scottish...
Preprint
Background Despite effectiveness of action and coping planning in digital health interventions to promote physical activity (PA), attrition rates remain high. Indeed, support to make plans is often abstract and similar for each individual. Nevertheless, people are different, and context varies. Tailored support at the content level, involving sugge...
Preprint
BACKGROUND Mobile health (mHealth) interventions may help adolescents in adopting a healthy lifestyle. However, attrition in these interventions is high. Overall, there is a lack of research on non-usage attrition in adolescents, in particular on the role of socioeconomic status (SES). OBJECTIVE This study focused on the role of SES in three resea...
Article
The measurement of automatic attitudes towards sleep, in addition to reflective self-reports, might improve our ability to predict and explain sleep-hindering practices. Two types of implicit association tests (IATs), a sleep-related evaluations IAT and a sleep-related self-identity IAT, were developed to evaluate their efficacy for assessing autom...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: To improve the treatment of painful Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy (DPN) and associated co-morbidities, a better understanding of the pathophysiology and risk factors for painful DPN is required. Using harmonised cohorts (N = 1230) we have built models that classify painful versus painless DPN. Methods: The Random Forest, Adaptive Regr...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The use of chatbots may increase engagement with digital behavior change interventions in youth by providing human-like interaction. Following a Person-Based Approach (PBA), integrating user preferences in digital tool development is crucial for engagement, whereas information on youth preferences for health chatbots is currently limite...
Article
The ability to habituate to pain may be adaptive, and it may enable us to pursue valuable goals despite the pain. In this study, we experimentally investigated this idea using the primary task paradigm in which participants had to identify the color of a circle (blue or yellow) as quickly as possible while ignoring painful or tactile distractors th...
Article
Background: To date, research has found variable success in using attentional bias modification training (ABMT) procedures in pain samples. Several factors could contribute to these mixed findings, including boredom and low motivation. Indeed, training paradigms are repetitive, which can lead to disengagement and high dropout rates. A potential ap...
Preprint
BACKGROUND To date, research has found variable success in using attentional bias modification training (ABMT) procedures in pain samples. Several factors could contribute to these mixed findings, including boredom and low motivation. Indeed, training paradigms are repetitive, which can lead to disengagement and high dropout rates. A potential appr...
Article
Full-text available
Background: e- and mHealth interventions using self-regulation techniques like action and coping planning have the potential to tackle the worldwide problem of physical inactivity. However, they often use one-week self-regulation cycles, providing support toward an active lifestyle on a weekly basis. This may be too long to anticipate on certain c...
Article
Full-text available
Background Questions have been raised about whether items of alexithymia scales assess the construct alexithymia and its key features, and no other related constructs. This study assessed the (discriminant) content validity of the most widely used alexithymia scale, i.e., the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). Methods Participants (n = 81) rated...
Article
Full-text available
Background Adopting an active lifestyle is key in the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Nevertheless, the majority of individuals with T2DM fails to do so. Additionally, individuals with T2DM are likely to experience mental (e.g., stress) and somatic (e.g., pain) stressors. Research investigating the link between these stressors and ac...
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Full-text available
Itch draws our attention to allow imposing action against bodily harm (e.g., remove insects). At the same time, itch is found to interfere with ongoing tasks and daily life goals. Despite the key role of attention in itch processing, interventions that train individuals to automatically disengage attention from itch cues are lacking. The present pr...
Article
Full-text available
Daily life consists of a chain of decisions. Typically, individuals may choose to pursue what they already know (exploitation), or to search for other options (exploration). This exploration-exploitation dilemma is a topic of interest across multiple scientific fields. Here we propose that investigating how individuals solve this dilemma may improv...
Preprint
BACKGROUND E- and m-health interventions have gained momentum to change health behaviours such as physical activity (PA) and sedentary behaviour (SB). Although these interventions show promising results in terms of behaviour change, they still suffer from high attrition rates, resulting in a lower potential and reachability. In order to reduce attr...
Article
Background Digital health interventions have gained momentum to change health behaviors such as physical activity (PA) and sedentary behavior (SB). Although these interventions show promising results in terms of behavior change, they still suffer from high attrition rates, resulting in a lower potential and accessibility. To reduce attrition rates...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: Neuropathic pain is a common disorder of the somatosensory system that affects 7%-10% of the general population. The disorder places a large social and economic burden on patients as well as healthcare services. However, not everyone with a relevant underlying aetiology develops corresponding pain. DOLORisk Dundee, a European Union-funded...
Article
Full-text available
This meta-analysis investigated whether more negative psychological factors are associated with less spinal amplitude of movement and higher trunk muscle activity in individuals with low back pain (LBP). Furthermore, it examined whether pain intensity was a confounding factor in this relationship. We included studies that provided at least one corr...
Article
Full-text available
Appropriate outcome measures and high-quality intervention trials are critical to advancing care for children with chronic pain. Our aim was to update a core outcome set for pediatric chronic pain interventions. The first phase involved collecting providers', patients', and parents' perspectives about treatment of pediatric chronic pain to understa...
Chapter
Sound assessment and measurement is at the heart of every discipline, including health psychology. Within the current chapter, we address several key issues of assessment and measurement in health psychology. We discuss the strengths and weaknesses of commonly used methodologies in health psychology research and clinic, including questionnaire asse...
Article
Full-text available
Background Fibromyalgia is characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain and often accompanied by cognitive and emotional problems. Adaptation to fibromyalgia may therefore also rely on one’s ability to regulate emotional problems. In this study, we examined two indices of emotion regulation, i.e., (1) affective instability, involving frequent l...
Preprint
Full-text available
Avoidance towards innocuous stimuli is a key characteristic across anxiety-related disorders and chronic pain. Insights into the relevant learning processes of avoidance are often gained via laboratory procedures, where individuals learn to avoid stimuli or movements that have been previously associated with an aversive stimulus. Typically, statist...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Pain can be influenced by several factors, including stress. Stress can have various reactions on pain. These reactions are influenced by several internal factors such as gender, age, and experience with stress or pain. Objectives: To determine the effect of acute stress on mechanical hyperalgesia (with pressure pain thresholds [PPT]...
Article
Full-text available
Background: E- and m-health interventions are promising to change health behaviour. Many of these interventions use a large variety of behaviour change techniques (BCTs), but it's not known which BCTs or which combination of BCTs contribute to their efficacy. Therefore, this experimental study investigated the efficacy of three BCTs (i.e. action p...
Article
Under some conditions, people persist in their attempts to control their pain even when no such control is possible. Theory suggests that such pain-control attempts arise from actual pain experiences. Across three experiments we examined how (a) losing control over pain and (b) instructions concerning pain, moderate pain-control attempts. In each e...
Article
Background: Conditioned pain modulation (CPM) methods are experimental procedures to assess presumed descending nociceptive modulatory pathways. Various CPM-methods are currently used, making the comparison of results difficult. The aim of this study was to compare five conditioning stimuli and to evaluate the influencing effects of personal facto...
Article
Full-text available
Avoidance towards innocuous stimuli is a key characteristic across anxiety-related disorders and chronic pain. Insights into the relevant learning processes of avoidance are often gained via laboratory procedures, where individuals learn to avoid stimuli or movements that have been previously associated with an aversive stimulus. Typically, statist...
Article
Full-text available
Background: There has been a growing interest in the application of gamification (ie, the use of game elements) to computerized cognitive training. The introduction of targeted gamification features to such tasks may increase motivation and engagement as well as improve intervention effects. However, it is possible that game elements can also have...
Article
Full-text available
Self‐compassion is associated with disability, pain‐related anxiety as well as depression and anger in patients with chronic pain. However, the unique value of self‐compassion versus other concepts such as psychological flexibility and self‐esteem is unknown. The present study therefore aimed to clarify these relationships. Individuals with chronic...
Article
Full-text available
Background Adherence to inaccurate rules has been viewed as a characteristic of human rule-following (i.e., the rule-based insensitivity effect; RBIE) and has been thought to be exacerbated in individuals suffering from clinical conditions. This review intended to systematically examine these claims in adult populations. Methodology We screened 14...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Electronic health (eHealth) and mobile health (mHealth) interventions have the potential to tackle the worldwide problem of physical inactivity. However, they often suffer from large attrition rates. Consequently, feasibility and acceptability of interventions have become important matters in the creation of e- and mHealth intervention...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background. Adherence to inaccurate rules has been viewed as a characteristic of human rule-following (i.e., the rule-based insensitivity effect; RBIE) and has been thought to be exacerbated in individuals suffering from clinical conditions. This review intended to systematically examine these claims in adult populations. Methodology. We screened...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Healthy lifestyles may contribute to better mental health, which is particularly important in adolescence, an age at which half of all mental health problems first occur. This association may be even more relevant in adolescents of low family affluence, who show more mental health problems, as well as more unhealthy lifestyles. This st...
Article
Background: Differences in pain processing, muscle structure and function have been reported in patients with low back pain (LBP) with different grades of pain chronicity. Objective: The present study aims to examine differences in psychological factors, disability and subjective fatigue between subgroups of LBP based on their chronification gra...
Preprint
Full-text available
BackgroundE- and m-health interventions are promising to change health behaviour. Many of these interventions use a large variety of behaviour change techniques (BCTs), but it’s not known which BCTs or which combination of BCTs contribute to their efficacy. Therefore, this study investigated the efficacy of three BCTs (i.e. action planning, coping...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background E- and m-health interventions are promising to change health behaviour. Many of these interventions use a large variety of behaviour change techniques (BCTs), but it’s not known which BCTs or which combination of BCTs contribute to their efficacy. Therefore, this experimental study investigated the efficacy of three BCTs (i.e. action pla...
Article
Full-text available
Neuroticism is one of the major traits describing human personality, and a predictor of mental and physical disorders with profound public health significance. Individual differences in emotional variability are thought to reflect the core of neuroticism. However, the empirical relation between emotional variability and neuroticism may be partially...
Article
Full-text available
Patients with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) report cognitive difficulties, affecting the ability to represent, perceive and use their affected limb. Moseley, Gallace & Spence (2009) observed that CRPS patients tend to bias the perception of tactile stimulation away from the pathological limb. Interestingly, this bias was reversed when CRPS...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) is a method of collecting real-time data based on repeated measures and observations that take place in participant's daily environment. EMA has many advantages over more traditional, retrospective questionnaires. However, EMA faces some challenges to reach its full potential. The aims of this syst...
Preprint
BACKGROUND There has been a growing interest in the application of gamification (ie, the use of game elements) to computerised cognitive training. The introduction of targeted gamification features to such tasks may increase motivation and engagement as well as improve intervention effects. However, there is also the possibility for game elements t...
Article
Full-text available
Background Concerns have been raised about whether self-report measures of pain catastrophizing reflect the construct as defined in the cognitive-behavioral literature. We investigated the content of these self-report measures; that is, whether items assess the construct ‘pain catastrophizing’ and not other theoretical constructs (i.e., related con...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Healthy lifestyles may contribute to better mental health, which is particularly important in adolescence, an age at which half of all mental health problems first occur. This association may be even more relevant in adolescents of low family affluence, who show more mental health problems, as well as more unhealthy lifestyles. This stud...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Healthy lifestyles may contribute to better mental health, which is particularly important in adolescence, an age at which half of all mental health problems first occur. This association may be even more relevant in adolescents of low family affluence, who show more mental health problems, as well as more unhealthy lifestyles. This stud...
Article
Full-text available
Background: There is limited understanding of the underlying mechanisms explaining the role of concern about falling on fall risk in older people. Anxiety is known to interact with cognitive resources and, as people get older, they require more cognitive resources to maintain balance. This might affect an individual's ability to perform cognitive-...
Article
In a randomized study with longitudinal data on a mediator and outcome, estimating the direct effect of treatment on the outcome at a particular time requires adjusting for confounding of the association between the outcome and all preceding instances of the mediator. When the confounders are themselves affected by treatment, standard regression ad...
Article
Persons with chronic musculoskeletal pain may be hypervigilant for pain-related cues which, paradoxically, may be maintaining their pain. Several randomized controlled trials have assessed whether a modified dot-probe protocol (i.e., attention bias modification; ABM) reduces chronic pain- and pain-related symptoms in persons with several diagnoses,...
Preprint
Pain is considered a hardwired signal of bodily disturbance belonging to a basic motivational system that urges the individual to act and to restore the body's integrity, rather than just a sensory and emotional experience. Given its eminent survival value, pain is a strong motivator for learning. Response to repeated pain increases when harm risks...
Article
Background: There is limited understanding of which components to include in digital interventions for 24-hour movement behaviors (physical activity, sleep and sedentary behavior). For intervention effectiveness, user engagement is important. This can be enhanced by a user-centered design, such as exploring and integrating user preferences for int...
Preprint
Full-text available
BACKGROUND Wearable trackers for monitoring physical activity (PA) and total sleep time (TST) are increasingly popular. These devices are not only used by consumers to monitor their behavior, but also by researchers to track the behavior of large samples and health professionals to implement interventions aimed at health promotion and to remotely m...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Wearable trackers for monitoring physical activity (PA) and total sleep time (TST) are increasingly popular. These devices are not only used by consumers to monitor their behavior but also by researchers to track the behavior of large samples and by health professionals to implement interventions aimed at health promotion and to remote...
Conference Paper
Background and aims With an incidence of up to 50%, chronic postsurgical pain (CPSP) is an important complication after surgery. Psychosocial variables seem to have a significant contribution but are not routinely screened for in clinical practice. This study examines the relationship between preoperatively reported psychosocial variables using val...
Poster
Full-text available
BACKGROUND: Pain can be influenced by several factors, including stress. Stress can have various reactions on pain. These reactions are influenced by several internal factors such as gender, age, and experience with stress or pain. OBJECTIVES: To determine the effect of acute stress on mechanical hyperalgesia (with pressure pain thresholds [PPT]),...