Activity interruptions, namely temporary suspensions of an ongoing task with the intention to resume it later, are common in pain. First, pain is a threat signal that urges us to interrupt ongoing activities in order to manage the pain and its cause. Second, activity interruptions are used in chronic pain management. However, activity interruptions by pain may carry costs for activity performance. These costs have recently started to be systematically investigated. We review the evidence on the consequences of activity interruptions by pain for the performance of the interrupted activity. Further, inspired by literature on interruptions from other research fields, we suggest ways to improve interruption management in the field of pain, and provide a future research agenda.
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- activity pacing, chronic pain, interruption management, TASK INTERRUPTION, WORKING-MEMORY, IMPLEMENTATION INTENTIONS, COGNITIVE FUNCTION, ACTIVITY PATTERNS, DECISION-MAKING, PERFORMANCE, ATTENTION, RECOVERY, INFORMATION