Pain and the stress-response systems
(Elective Module)

20 CPD points

This 2-day online course aims to provide health care professionals with the knowledge and insight necessary to address self-regulating protective systems that are important components of pain experiences.


This course will cover the physiology and function of the immune system, autonomic nervous system, and endocrine system. Participants will be equipped with the latest research and evidence on how these systems may influence the experience of pain and how the ongoing experience of pain impacts the functioning of these systems. Practical tools on how to assist patients with self-regulating these systems will be demonstrated.

By the end of this module participants will:

  • Have been introduced to the physiological systems involved in self-regulation, namely the  immune, ANS, endocrine systems
  • Have reviewed how the neurophysiology of pain mechanisms interacts with the self-regulatory systems 
  • Have been introduced to the concepts of load and capacity within the context of pain
  • Know the evidence to support the use of interventions commonly used to assist self-regulation in the management of people with pain
  • Be able to apply a clinical reasoning process to develop a biopsychosocial formulation to guide comprehensive pain management

Course Presenters

Jacqui Koep

MSc Med

Dr. Gaby Prinsloo

MBChB, PhD Exercise Science