top of page

Our 2023 Agenda

You will gain the ability to describe and critically analyze recent research on the mechanisms and management of pain with our diverse, multidisciplinary membership. You'll integrate activities and understanding that will help improve access to high-quality pain care, including preventing and treating pain more effectively. 


Concurrent sessions have been coordinated to encompass mechanisms of pain; biopsychosocial factors of pain; pain treatments; and pain programs, education, policy, and advocacy.

All efforts will be in place to avoid any timing adjustments, that may occur without advance notice. All timing for this event is in Mountain Daylight Time.


Registration and Daily Check In

Check in here daily to ensure you receive your educational credits.



Start your morning off with a well-balanced breakfast.


Plenary: Neuroimmune Interactions for the Induction and Resolution of Pain

Dr. Ru-Rong Ji

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the role of glial and immune cells in the induction and resolution of pain. ‣ Review evidence that pro-resolution mediators, such as resolvins, can alleviate pain. ‣ Discuss how neuromodulation controls pain via neuroimmune interactions.


Concurrent Session Four: The Role of the Gut Microbiome in Somatosensation and Pain - Mechanisms and Clinical Implications

Chair: A. Khoutorsky
Speakers: C. Altier, S. Shen. A. Minerbi

Learning Objectives: ‣ Identify the importance of the microbiota in regulating sensory functions. Gain a better understanding of the role of the microbiota on nociceptor specification and excitability and learn about the mechanisms by which the microbiota regulates nociceptor function. ‣ Develop a framework for understanding the role of gut microbiome metabolites in brain health and pain ‣ Describe the role of gut microbiome in fibromyalgia in humans and animal models. Available measures of microbiome manipulation will be discussed. Attendees will also study the clinical effects of diet and fecal microbiome transplantation on symptom severity and the composition of the gut microbiome in women with fibromyalgia.


Concurrent Session Four: Pain Experiences of Youth with Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (NDDs): Bridging Research and Practice

Chair: S. Noyek
Speakers: C. Nania, D. Moore, C.M. McMurtry

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the current status and innovations of pain research within basic science, psychology, and health disciplines across different populations of youth with NDDs. ‣ Gain knowledge of the challenges to pain assessment, management, and efficacy of pain management in youth with NDDs. ‣ Gather insights from persons with lived experience and contribute to an engaged discussion of how stakeholders can contribute to a more holistic understanding of pain and mental health in youth with NDDs.


Concurrent Session Four: Hot Topics Trainee Presentations

Presenters: T. Jassal, W. Cai, C.Faig, N. van den Hoogen, M. Pavlova, P. Tutelman

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the latest research in pain mechanisms and clinical care. ‣ Critique and evaluate emerging topics in pain research.


Concurrent Session Four: The Intersection of Pain and Addiction: Using Harm Reduction Strategies to Keep Patients with Chronic Pain Safe Within the Context of the Current Opioid Crisis

Chair: H. Clarke
Speakers: K. Nicholson, S. Ladak, A. Sutherland

Learning Objectives: ‣ Acquire a nuanced understanding of the impact of prescribing guidelines on the current medico-legal landscape and the human rights of patients. ‣ Define patient-centered application of harm reduction during hospitalization. ‣ Explore how pain and addiction medicine services can co-exist to improve patient outcomes.


Refreshment Break

Browse posters and connect with our exhibitors


Concurrent Session Five: Pain and Time

Chair: L. Diatchenko
Speakers: L. Diatchenko, R. Ji, J. Mogil

Learning Objectives: ‣ Interpret the evidence of the dynamics of active biological processes that underlies pain resolution. ‣ Discover how pro-resolving mediators and their receptors regulate the resolution processes in immune/glial cells and neurons. ‣ Explore how pain-relevant biological changes occurring many months after injury.


Concurrent Session Five: Neurophysiological Changes Following Physical or Emotional Childhood Trauma in the Transition from Acute to Chronic Pain

Chair: S. Nelson
Speakers: J. Christianson, S. Miller, S. Nelson, T. Pigott

Learning Objectives: ‣ Compare adolescent brain development in rodents with human brain development during this time period, as well as the sex-dependent similarities and differences between the chronification of pain in adolescents and adults. ‣ Demonstrate how exposure to trauma may alter brain functioning and modify pain thresholds, to potentially increase the risk of developing chronic pain in a non-clinical sample of adolescents. ‣ Identify how the physiological stress response may manifest in youth with chronic pain and potentially contribute to pain chronicity.


Concurrent Session Five: Can Clinical Trials Translate Pain Science into Improved Care for People Suffering from Pain? Incorporating Basic Principles with Patient Engagement and Real-world Clinical Practice

Chair: I. Gilron
Speakers: I. Gilron, D. Richards, J. Khan

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe various aspects of participant population, characteristics of the treatment intervention and outcomes of interest when balancing internal validity with generalizability in clinical trials of pain treatments. ‣ Identify new efforts whereby patient engagement is guiding recent innovations in the design, conduct and interpretation of clinical pain trials. ‣ Recognize challenges and opportunities associated with the interpretation of clinical trials of pain treatments and their implementation into clinical practice.


Concurrent Session Five: Exploring and Healing Pediatric Chronic Pain in Indigenous Youth and Families Through Two-Eyed Seeing

Chair: F. Di Valentin
Speakers: A. Kandasamy, J. Gregory, M. Syeda, H. Talbot, S. Spence

Learning Objectives: ‣ Explore expressions of pain and healing in Indigenous youth and caregivers. ‣ Exemplify Two-Eyed Seeing in clinical and research methodology (formerly provide a template for two eyed seeing clinical and research methodology. ‣ Report on an intervention cocreated by indigenous youth and their caregivers.



Take a break and refuel


Concurrent Session Six: Bridging the Gap: Translational Approaches to Studying Pain in Rodent and Human Models

Chair: E. Tsai
Speakers: A. Dedek, K. Sadler, B. Copits

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe barriers that exist between rodent pain models and the clinical population. ‣ Formulate applications of translational preclinical human tissue models to study functional properties of pain-processing neurons. ‣ Develop strategies for pairing rodent pain models with preclinical human tissue applications.


Concurrent Session Six: Considering the Multiple Identities of Patients with Chronic Pain: How Can We Tailor Pain Care to Support Young Athletes?

Chairs: M. Noel & K. Dittrich
Speakers: L. Harrison, K. Hurtubise, C. Hess

Learning Objectives: ‣ Identify the impact chronic pain can have on a high-performance, Olympic level athlete, including intersectionality of identities and unique considers for treatment. ‣ Tailor interdisciplinary interventions for chronic pain to the unique needs of athletes. ‣ Acquire a framework for interprofessional collaboration between pain and sport spheres to improve outcomes for young athletes with chronic pain.


Concurrent Session Six: Placebo Effects with Treatments for Pain - Making Much Out of Nothing at all?

Chair: J. Hashmi
Speakers: J. Hashmi, J. Markman. A. Bhatia

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the placebo effect and its relevance in affecting outcomes of pain treatments. ‣ Identify the mechanisms involved in the placebo effect and the evidence-base supporting these. ‣ Recognize the differential magnitude of placebo effects associated with analgesic treatments and their impact on treatment decisions and outcomes.


Concurrent Session Six: Mobile Health Data for Pediatric Pain: Inter-institutional Experiences and Best Practices for Patient-centred Data Capture, Analysis, and Visualization.

Chair: V. Mohabir
Speakers: C. Lalloo, K. Boerner, J. Kossowsky

Learning Objectives: ‣ Articulate the considerations and benefits of different types of Digital Health data capture and visualizations for youth with acute and chronic pain. ‣ Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of various platform choices for Digital Health data capture, analysis, and visualization. ‣ Formulate a roadmap for meaningful inclusion of youth voices across the developmental spectrum into the design and implementation of data capture and visualization processes.


Refreshment Break

Browse posters and connect with our exhibitors


Poster Session Two

Join our judging committee as we award our poster winners


Concurrent Session Seven: Prenatal and Neonatal Exposure to Pain and its Long-Term Effects on the Developing Brain

Chair: J. Miller
Speakers: J. Jessa, E. Duerden, S. Beggs

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe trajectories of pain intensity, pain catastrophizing and pain interference during the perinatal period and, the possible implications of trajectory membership for both the mothers and infants. ‣ Identify the motivation and methodologies for studying early brain development and outcomes in high-risk infants, with an emphasis on risk factors for altered brain development. ‣ Demonstrate how complementary methodologies between preclinical and clinical research can be used to mechanistically understand the lasting impact of early life pain.


Concurrent Session Seven: Perceived Injustice and Pain: Causes, Consequences and Mechanisms of Action

Chair: M. Sullivan
Speakers: H. Adams, J. Carrière. M. Sullivan

Learning Objectives: ‣ Familiarize themselves with what is known about the consequences of perceived injustice associated with pain. ‣ Explore research findings addressing the determinant of perceived injustice in individuals with disabling musculoskeletal injuries. ‣ Recognize injured workers' perspectives on sources of injustice in the immediate aftermath of work injury.


Concurrent Session Seven: Implantable Neuromodulation Therapies for Pain - As Simple as Buzzing the Pain Away or More to it than meets the eye?

Chair: A. Bhatia
Speakers: K. MacDougall. J. Osborn, V. Mohabir

Learning Objectives: ‣ Recognize the types of neuromodulation therapies and their application in relieving pain. ‣ Identify the indications for neuromodulation for treating common refractory pain syndromes and the evidence-base supporting these. ‣ Appraise the limitations that impact on the use of neuromodulation for pain including gaps in awareness of healthcare providers and support from healthcare payors.


Concurrent Session Seven: Driving Policy Development for Pain in Canada: Perspectives from a Governmental, Lived Experience, Clinician, and Advocacy Group Lens

Chairs: F. Campbell
Speakers: J. Laliberté, J.F. Leroux, M. Hudspith, T. Wasylak

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the roles and responsibilities of different stakeholders in driving policy changes in pain-related areas. ‣ Learners will be able to describe challenges and limitations in the development implementation of pain policies at the national, federal and provincial/territorial levels. ‣ Recognize progress in advancing pain policies at the national, federal and provincial/territorial levels.


President’s Gala

Included with both full conference and Friday-only registrations. Ticket includes a served dinner and dancing. Attire is Formal, and this is an adults only event. Please visit our childcare section above if you require this.


Registration and Daily Check In

Check in here daily to ensure you receive your educational credits.



Start your morning off with a well-balanced breakfast.


Opening Remarks and Special Address

Canadian Pain Society President Dr. John Pereira


Fibromyalgia: Attempts at Uncovering the Pathophysiology

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Claudia Sommer

Learning Objectives: ‣ Understand and use the current criteria for the fibromyalgia syndrome. ‣ Name and critically evaluate current theories on the pathophysiology of fibromyalgia. ‣ Discuss peripheral and central components of the fibromyalgia syndrome.


Poster Pitches

Browse posters and listen to their exciting pitches!


Refreshment Break

Browse posters and connect with our exhibitors


Poster Session One

Join our judging committee as we award our poster winners


Concurrent Session One: The Impact of Sleep and Chronobiology on Nociception and Chronic Pain

Chair: J. Daly-Cyr
Speakers: G. Neely, N. Ghasemlou, G. Pagé

Learning Objectives: ‣ Recognize the interplay between pain and sleep first evolved ~550 million years ago and may have provided a selective advantage over evolution. ‣ Evaluate neuroinflammatory mechanisms regulating circadian nociception, and why they may be selective for one sex over the other. ‣ Identify specific profiles of pain rhythmicity in low back pain and understand how they are associated with psychosocial outcomes.


Concurrent Session One: Pediatric Chronic Postsurgical Pain: Altering Pain Trajectories

Chair: J. Tyrrell
Speakers: B. Rosenbloom, L. Isaac, D. Ruskin

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the four essential elements of a pediatric Transitional Pain Service and its role in the prevention of chronic post-surgical pain and associated sequelae. ‣ Identify the risk factors for the development of chronic post-surgical pain in children and youth. ‣ Describe the role of psychological interventions in the prevention of CPSP.


Concurrent Session One: Innovations in Complex Cancer Pain Research: Learning from Real-world Clinical Experiences to Improve Research Methodology and Clinical Practice

Chairs: M. Bouchard & L. Gauthier
Speakers: P. Bérubé-Mercier, J. Gewandter, D. Langford

Learning Objectives: ‣ Identify methodological improvements to enhance the quality of ClinROM and PROM in assessing CIPN. ‣ Develop strategies that can be implemented to optimize the design of CIPN (and other pain) prevention trials. ‣ Appreciate the tremendous complexity of cancer pain and understand strategies that can be used to better capture the pain experience as a whole.


Concurrent Session One: Pain Education in Canada: New Research in Pre and Post Licensure Learning and Outcomes

Chair: I. Cioffi
Speakers: S. Langlois, C. Dale. S. Hassan

Learning Objectives: ‣ Recognize disparities in pain learning opportunities in Canada. ‣ Articulate the pain learning needs and experiences of Canadian pre-and post-licensure health care professionals. ‣ Identify opportunities to measure knowledge and competence in pain management.



Take a break and refuel


Plenary: Rethinking Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Accessibility in 2023

Dr. Gaynor Watson-Creed

Learning Objectives: ‣ Recognize how practice and profession of medicine has complicit in upholding forms of oppression, using racism as the primary example.  ‣ Explore the concept of anti-oppressive practice, including the concepts of identity, intersectionality, and power. ‣ Reflect on the biases we are left with and how we might react with fragility when they are exposed.


Concurrent Session Two: Sex Differences in Pain and Analgesia Mechanisms: Evidence from Animal and Human Brain Imaging

Chair: J. Da Silva
Speakers: J. Da Silva, J. Moron-Concepcion, N. Osborne

Learning Objectives: ‣ Reflect on the impact of sex and age on central mechanisms of pain, with focus on functional connectivity of descending pain inhibitory pathways. ‣ Identify how pain impacts motivational states that may drive drug seeking behavior in a sex-dependent manner. ‣ Recognize commonalities in basic and clinical studies exhibiting sex differences in brain plasticity in chronic pain.


Concurrent Session Two: Early Life Trauma and Chronic Pain Across the Lifespan and Generations: Identifying Mechanisms across Species and New Intervention Targets to Break the Cycle

Chair: J. Belton
Speakers: R. Mychasiuk, M. Noel, C. Shenk

Learning Objectives: ‣ Define some of the epigenetic mechanisms responsible for the intergenerational transmission of chronic pain risk. ‣ Recognize new emerging, longitudinal data from both clinical and preclinical models, the key neurobiological and social mechanisms that underlie the trauma-chronic pain relationship in adolescence and its intergenerational transmission. ‣ Apply validating behaviors to the recovery from early life adversity and the management of pediatric chronic pain.


Concurrent Session Two: Classification of Chronic Primary Pain in ICD 11 - Does Nociplastic PainTerminology Allow for Better Diagnostic Categorization and Enhanced Treatment Opportunities?

Chair: N. Mittal
Speakers: N. Mittal, M.A. Fitzcharles. A. Mailis

Learning Objectives: ‣ Describe the new framework and classification of chronic primary pain according to the ICD 11 chronic pain classification. ‣ Review the new structure of chronic primary musculoskeletal pains and discuss chronic primary widespread pain and common masked pain conditions that require differential diagnosis. ‣ Describe the limitations of the current framework of nociplastic pain in relation to the classification of chronic primary pain.


Concurrent Session Two: Trainee Workshop: Hacking Your Way Through CIHR Funding with the Lens of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Dr. Rebecca Pillai

Learning Objectives: ‣ Conducting a training session to improve the trainees and increase trainees' proficiency on the obtention of funding through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) imparted by Dr. Rebecca Pillai. ‣ Fostering collaborative relationships and knowledge exchange between research trainees from all stages and well-settled professionals all with a shared focus on pain. ‣ Providing the CPS trainees, a safe space to understand how intersectional identities and life experiences mold the career of established professionals in the pain world.


Refreshment Break

Browse posters and connect with our exhibitors


Concurrent Session Three: Contribution of Non-neuronal Cells to Sex Differences in Nociception and the Transition from Acute to Chronic Pain

Chair: G. Descalzi
Speakers: G. Laumet, V. Tawfik, G. Descalzi

Learning Objectives: ‣ Recognize the involvement of peripheral immune cells in the development and resolution of chronic pain. ‣ Describe microglia activation in the spinal cord, and how they contribute to chronic pain in a sexually dimorphic manner. ‣ Describe how chronic inflammatory pain engages astrocyte-neuronal metabolic coupling in the cingulate cortex of mice in a sexually dimorphic manner.


Concurrent Session Three: The Burden of Not Knowing: How Diagnostic and Sensory Uncertainty Impact on Pain Outcomes and Chronic Pain Disability

Chair: A. Meulders
Speakers: A. Meulders, T. Stanton, A. Neville

Learning Objectives: ‣ Define the diagnostic uncertainty in the context of pediatric chronic pain and how changes in parental uncertainty are connected to childrens pain outcomes. ‣ Explore the role of sensory uncertainty in pain responses and protective behavior. ‣ Evaluate how diagnostic and sensory uncertainty can be targeted therapeutically.


Registration is Open!

Get a jump start on your conference weekend by completing your registration.


Welcome and Opening Remarks

Canadian Pain Society President Dr. John Pereira, Dr. Michael Hildebrand and Dr. Gabrielle Pagé

Special Address and Keynote Presentations by:
Early Career and Distinguished Career Award Recipients
Presentation and Keynote Presentation of Distinguished Career Award, M. Choinière
Presentation and Keynote Presentation of Early Career Award, A. Khoutorsky


Welcome Reception

Join us and kick-off our event!

Wednesday May 10th
Thursday May 11th
Friday May 12th

Late Breaking Abstracts

The Scientific Planning Committee seeks to offer a balanced, diverse, and cutting-edge scientific program that reflects different areas of science from all members of the pain community.  Your participation is of the utmost importance and will be integral for the success of the 2023 Annual Scientific Meeting and continued progress in pain research and management.  All abstracts must be submitted through the CPS abstract submission portal below before Tuesday February 28th by 2259h ET

Coming Together at the Banff Springs Hotel

A Quick Note!  We realize an unforeseen conference events and time frames may change without notice and impact your travel plans. Although we will endeavour to avoid these changes, please note the Canadian Pain Society will not be responsible for any incurred costs due to these changes.

Foster collaborative relationships and knowledge exchanges between research scientists, health care professionals, trainees, and persons with lived experience, all with a shared focus on pain.  Please take advantage of our travel discounts below!

Our 2023 Annual Scientific Meeting

May 10-12, 2023 at the Banff Springs Hotel

Individuals with an interest in pain from all around the world come together to share knowledge and expertise on the latest advancements in pain mechanisms, evaluation, and management.

Find out here how we are committed to keeping you safe with our Covid-19 Guidelines.

✶ Keynote Speaker

Claudia Sommer

University Hospital Würzburg, Germany

A Professor of Neurology at the University of Würzburg, Germany. She received training in neurology, psychiatry, neuropathology, and experimental pain research. At the University Hospital of Würzburg, she serves as a consultant in neurology, organizes outpatient clinics for patients with neuromuscular disorders, pain and headache, and she leads the Peripheral Nerve Laboratory. Research interests are the pathophysiology of pain, of inflammatory neuropathies, and of antibody-mediated diseases. She has written more than 250 original research papers and more than 100 reviews and book-chapters and edited several books. She has served as President of the German Pain Society in 2019-2020 and as President of the International Society for the Study of Pain (IASP, 2020-2022). She is a Fellow of the European Academy of Neurology, and a Board member of the Peripheral Nerve Society (PNS) and the International Research Consortium for CRPS. She is also Deputy Editor of the European Journal of Neurology.

✶ Plenary Speaker

Ru-Rong Ji


William Maixner Professor of Anesthesiology, Professor of Cell Biology and Neurobiology, Director of Center for Translational Pain Center (CTPM), Duke Medical Center, in Durham, North Carolina

✶ Plenary Speaker

Gaynor Watson-Creed

MD, MSc, CCFP, FRCPC, DSc (hc)

The Associate Dean of Serving and Engaging Society for Dalhousie University’s Faculty of Medicine, and past Chair of the Board of Engage Nova Scotia. She is a public health specialist physician with 17 years experience, having served as the former Medical Officer of Health for the Halifax area and Deputy Chief Medical Officer of Health for Nova Scotia. She served as a member of the One Nova Scotia Coalition economic strategy table in Nova Scotia and was recently a member of the federal Task Force on Women in the Economy. Dr. Watson-Creed has an MD from Dalhousie University, an MSc from the University of Guelph, a BSc from the University of Prince Edward Island, and an honorary doctorate from Acadia University. She also sits as chair or member of several national population health councils and boards and is a passionate advocate for high-quality public health services in Canada.

Our Distinguished Speakers

bottom of page