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Objective. To investigate the utility of the Pain Patient Profile (P3) in detecting those who are faking or exaggerating complaints of pain while attempting to avoid detection.

Method. A control group of pain patients (‘Pain Controls’; PC; N=62) was compared with a general clinical group who did not report pain but were instructed to simulate malingered pain (‘General Rehabilitation Simulators’, GR; N=34); and a group whose primary problem was chronic pain who were instructed to exaggerate the extent of their pain and related problems (‘Pain Simulators’ PS; N=26).

Results. Both groups of simulating participants reported significantly higher scores on all clinical scales (anxiety, depression, somatization) compared with nonsimulating control participants and were more likely to obtain an abnormal T-score on the clinical scales. The validity scale was able to differentiate the PS group from the PC group, but the GR group was not differentiated from the PC group by the validity scale.

Conclusions. The results indicate that with further study, the P3 may be a useful adjunct to the clinical assessment of symptom magnification in pain claimants.