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Somerset Hunterdon Warren Psychological Association

New Approaches to Psychotherapy for Chronic Pain

  • Friday, October 28, 2022
  • 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
  • Beaver Brook Country Club 25 Country Club Dr, Annandale, NJ 08801


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 Somerset, Hunterdon, Warren Psychological Association (SHWPA)\

 New Approaches to Psychotherapy for Chronic Pain
 (includes screening of the movie “This Might Hurt”)

 Presented by
 Jeffrey Axelbank, Psy.D.

Location: Beaver Brook Country Club 25 Country Club Dr, Annandale, NJ 08801
Lunch served during screening of the movie
Friday October 28, 2022 11:00 to 3:00- 15minute Break at 1:00

 3 Continuing Education Credits
Jeffrey Axelbank, Psy.D. is a psychologist in private practice in Highland Park, NJ. He provides individual and group therapy, specializing in complex trauma and chronic pain.

He also consults to organizations and community groups using a whole-system approach to problems such as conflict resolution, strategic planning, burnout and morale, organizational culture, and change management. Chronic pain is one of the major health problems today. Over 100 million people are affected by chronic pain, more than the number dealing with cancer, heart disease, and diabetes combined. And yet, medical treatments - dominated by medications, injections, and surgery - by and large do not work. Psychological and medical approaches to chronic pain have traditionally focused on “managing” the pain and its impact. However, in the 1980’s, John Sarno, MD developed a new way to think about chronic pain that led to psychological treatments that actually eliminate the pain, truly curing people of pain they may have endured for years or even decades. Disorders such as degenerative disk disease, carpel tunnel, plantar fasciitis, sciatica, TMJ, IBS, whiplash, have been successfully treated in this way. The approach has also been successfully applied to medically unexplained conditions and other mind-body disorders such as fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. Dr. Axelbank will present Dr. Sarno’s work, and variants developed by others who followed, an interesting hybrid of psychoanalytic theory in a treatment that combines psycho-dynamic therapy with some cognitive elements. We will use some excerpts from a documentary movie on Dr. Sarno’swork, “All The Rage,” as well as personal examples and cases Dr. Axelbank has treated in his psychotherapy practice. This program will also feature a screening of the documentary film “This Might Hurt,” which follows a cohort of patients in a group-based treatment program with Dr. Howard Schubiner, based on Dr. Sarno’s approach.
There will also be a chance for questions and answers to discuss chronic pain cases you are working with to see how to integrate Dr. Sarno’s approach into your therapy practice.

 Learning Objectives:

 1. Participants will be able to identify the three pillars of John Sarno’s approach to chronic pain.

 2. Participants will be able to recognize and critique the evidence for mind-body disorders that are often labeled as medical or physical disorders

3. Participants will be able to apply techniques to help their patients recognize the ways that their pain distracts them from unpleasant emotions

4. Participants will be able to recognize the connections between adverse childhood events and trauma, and chronic pain

Instruction Level: Intermediate

Dr. Jeffery Axelbank does not have any commercial support and/or conflict of interest for this program.

ADA accommodations available upon written request, by emailing Virginia Walters, Psy.D., no later than October 20, 2022. (

Program Fee: Lunch included - SHWPA Member: $60, Non-SHWPA Member $70,

Student: $15, Online registration and Payment can be made at OR by writing a check payable to SHWPA and mailing it to Tracy Menzie P.O. Box 644 Lebanon, NJ 08833

NJPA - Continuing Education Credit / Administrative Fee for 3 credits (an additional fee), can be paid to NJPA online after this program. NJPA Fees: Sustaining Member – Free, NJPA Member - $15, Non-NJPA Member - $25. The NJPA Link to pay and complete the NJPA evaluation will be provided to all registrants during the program.

Contact Virginia Walters, Psy.D. 908-439-3456 X8 /

This workshop is co-sponsored by NJPA and SHWPA. NJPA is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists.

NJPA maintains responsibility for the program and its content. 

The Somerset Hunterdon Psychological Association. All Rights Reserved. 

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