Chronic Pain: A Mindbody Disorder

October 17, 2019, 8:00 - 10:00 PM

Psychoanalysts Frances Sommer Anderson, PhD, SEP, and Eric Sherman, PsyD, will present what they have learned in the past 40 years about chronic pain and its relationship to processing emotions. Karen Kay, PhD, PsyD, a member of NCP who has studied PPD for 20 years, will facilitate discussion with members of the audience.

Dr. Anderson’s presentation will be “No Longer Afraid to Feel: A Psychoanalytic Perspective on Disrupted Early Attachment, Emotion Regulation and Somatic Pain.” She will use interviews with two people who had chronic pain to illustrate her relational psychoanalytic perspective.

Dr. Sherman will discuss the role of anger, rage and other emotions in the development of chronic psychophysiologic pain disorders. In presenting “It’s Not All the Rage, All the Time,” he will acknowledge the foundational work of the late John E. Sarno, MD, who was Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine at Rusk Institute-NYU Langone Medical Center, as well as noting recent developments in this field. Based on his observations of people in pain beginning in the early 1970's, Dr. Sarno identified chronic pain as a mindbody disorder, which he named “Tension Myositis Syndrome" (TMS). He subsequently changed the name to “Tension Myoneural Syndrome,” which is also referred to as Psychophysiologic Pain Disorder or PPD.

Learning Objectives

After attending this program, participants should be able to:

  • Explain the role of emotions in the development of chronic psychophysiologic pain disorders 
  • Describe a treatment approach for chronic pain from a relational psychoanalytic perspective 


Pathways to Pain Relief Master Class: Those interested in a small-group exploration of these topics may join one of two workshops, to be held on Friday, October 18 and Saturday, October 19, from 10 AM - 3:30 PM. Enrollment for these dates is limited to 25 and the same material will be presented on both dates. Please register for only one date. 


Frances Sommer Anderson, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist in New York State, holds a Certificate of Specialization in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis from New York University. She has been fascinated by the "mindbody problem" since her first undergraduate course in psychology. While doing an APA-approved clinical psychology internship at Rusk Institute--New York University Langone Medical Center in 1974, she learned about the impact of congenital, traumatic, and progressive physically-disabling conditions on children's emotional development. Treating patients with mindbody pain disorders became a life-long professional and personal passion, which Anderson depicts in "At a Loss for Words and Feelings," a chapter in her edited book, Bodies in Treatment: The Unspoken Dimension (The Analytic Press/Taylor & Francis Group, 2007. Dr. Anderson is known internationally for her psychoanalytic explorations of the mindbody relationship and the use of bodily experience in the psychotherapy process.

Dr. Eric Sherman is a licensed psychologist practicing in New York City. He received a certificate of Specialization in Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy from The New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis. He completed his clinical internship at The Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine of New York University Langone Medical Center and served on the staff of Rusk’s Psychophysiological Pain Program. Dr. Sherman currently has a full-time private practice treating adults in psychoanalysis and individual psychotherapy. He provides training and consultation to clinicians and health care professionals. In addition to his work with psychophysiological disorders, Dr. Sherman is interested in investigating the psychological determinants of paranormal experiences. He is also interested in studying the role of cross-cultural identity in personality development. Dr. Sherman is an unrepentant crossword puzzle addict.

Dr. Karen Kay is a licensed clinical psychologist. In addition to receiving her doctorate in clinical psychology in 1984, she went on to receive a doctorate in clinical child psychology at The Graduate Center for Child Development and Psychotherapy in Los Angeles,  and subsequently received training as a psychoanalyst at the Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis (ICP). Dr. Kay was a supervisor for the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy for over 20 years.  She is a member of both ICP and the New Center for Psychoanalysis.  Dr. Kay is a training and supervising analyst at ICP. She maintains a private practice in West Los Angeles.


Target Audience: This intermediate level program is open to mental health clinicians from all disciplines. 



Thursday, October 17, 2019,   8-10 PM   2 CE credits

Registration: $20 with CE Credit 

Free attendance without CE Credit




IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION FOR ALL LEARNERS: None of the planners and presenters of ths CME/CE program have any relevant financial relationships to disclose. 

PHYSICIANS: This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the American Psychoanalytic Association and the New Center for Psychoanalysis. The American Psychoanalytic Association is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians. 

The American Psychoanalytic Association designates this Live Activity for the maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.  

PSYCHOLOGISTS: The New Center for Psychoanalysis is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. New Center for Psychoanalysis maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Full attendance is required for psychologists to receive credit; partial credit may not be awarded based on APA guidelines. For the psychologists’ records, certificates of attendance are provided at the completion of the course.  


The New Center for Psychoanalysis is a continuing education provider that has been approved by the American Psychological Association, a California Board of Behavioral Sciences recognized approval agency. 

REGISTERED NURSES: The New Center for Psychoanalysis is an accredited provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing (Provider #CEP1112). Registered Nurses may claim only the actual number of hours spent in the educational activity for credit.