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Amy Wachholtz


Dr. Amy Wachholtz is an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Colorado Denver and the Director of Clinical Health Psychology. Her primary research, teaching, and clinical interests focus on 1) bio-psycho-social-spiritual model of chronic pain disorders and 2) the complexities of treating of co-morbid pain and opioid addiction in both acute pain and chronic pain situations.  Her translational research program ranges from human laboratory psycho-physiological assessments to developing and implementing empirically validated treatments.  She is NIH-funded to study co-morbid pain and opioid addiction and also has a number of smaller grants to improve multi-dimensional pain management in advanced cancer patients, to reduce burnout among health care workers, and assessment of cross-cultural concepts of health and well-being. 


Wachholtz's work is grounded in the bio-psycho-social-spiritual model, with a particular interest in identifying ways to improve pain management including in palliative care, acute medical care, and comorbid pain and opioid addiction settings. She has also published on the impact of psychopharmacology on the intertwined areas of pain, sleep, and mental health. In addition, she enjoys teaching students about health psychology and links between biology and psychology across classroom, clinical, and research settings.

Wachholtz received her Bachelors degree in Psychology from DePauw University and received her Masters in Divinity in Theology from Boston University, specializing in bioethics. She also completed a post-doctoral Master’s degree in Psychopharmacology, after gaining a Masters and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Bowling Green State University. She completed a Clinical Psychology Internship and a Medical Psychology Fellowship at Duke University Medical Center, where she focused on medical psychology and pain management..

Find out more about Wachholtz’s research program and publications here

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