Laura Simons MD

Laura Simons, PhD

Staff Psychologist

Instructor of Psychology in Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

    Contact: (617) 355-6995
  • Fax: (617) 730-0199

Medical Services


  • Pain Management Treatment
  • Physically Ill Children


  • Anesthesiology Perioperative and Pain Medicine


  • English


  • Pain Treatment Services
To schedule an appointment: Call (617) 355-6995

Experience and Education


Undergraduate - Psychology

Ohio University, 2001

Athens, OH

Graduate School - Ph.D in Clinical Psychology

The University of Georgia, 2006

Athens, Georgia

Ph.D in Clinical Psychology - M.S. in Clinical Psychology

The University of Georgia, 2004

Athens, Georgia

Child Clinical/Pediatric Psychology Internship

University of Flordia Health Science Center, 2004-2005

Gainesville, FL

Pain Treatment Service Fellowship

Boston Children's Hospital, 2006-2008

Boston, MA


Publications powered by Harvard Catalyst Profiles
  1. Pate JW, Hush JM, Hancock MJ, Moseley GL, Butler DS, Simons LE, Pacey V. A Child's Concept of Pain: An International Survey of Pediatric Pain Experts. Children (Basel). 2018 Jan 15; 5(1).
  2. Randall ET, Smith KR, Kronman CA, Conroy C, Smith AM, Simons LE. Feeling the Pressure to Be Perfect: Effect on Pain-Related Distress and Dysfunction in Youth With Chronic Pain. J Pain. 2017 Dec 14.
  3. Simons LE, Sieberg CB, Conroy C, Randall ET, Shulman J, Borsook D, Berde C, Sethna NF, Logan DE. Children With Chronic Pain: Response Trajectories After Intensive Pain Rehabilitation Treatment. J Pain. 2018 Feb; 19(2):207-218.
  4. Sieberg CB, Manganella J, Manalo G, Simons LE, Hresko MT. Predicting Postsurgical Satisfaction in Adolescents With Idiopathic Scoliosis: The Role of Presurgical Functioning and Expectations. J Pediatr Orthop. 2017 Dec; 37(8):e548-e551.
  5. Rabner J, Kaczynski KJ, Simons LE, LeBel A. Pediatric Headache and Sleep Disturbance: A Comparison of Diagnostic Groups. Headache. 2018 Feb; 58(2):217-228.
  6. Heathcote LC, Rabner J, Lebel A, Hernandez JM, Simons LE. Rapid Screening of Risk in Pediatric Headache: Application of the Pediatric Pain Screening Tool. J Pediatr Psychol. 2017 Oct 10.
  7. Ross AC, Simons LE, Feinstein AB, Yoon IA, Bhandari RP. Social Risk and Resilience Factors in Adolescent Chronic Pain: Examining the Role of Parents and Peers. J Pediatr Psychol. 2017 Sep 23.
  8. Nelson S, Simons L, Logan D. The Incidence of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and their Association with Pain-related and Psychosocial Impairment in Youth with Chronic Pain. Clin J Pain. 2017 Sep 01.
  9. Rabner J, Kaczynski KJ, Simons LE, Lebel AA. The Sleep Hygiene Inventory for Pediatrics: Development and Validation of a New Measure of Sleep in a Sample of Children and Adolescents With Chronic Headache. J Child Neurol. 2017 Nov; 32(13):1040-1046.
  10. Garcia G, Snell C, Sawicki G, Simons LE. Mental Health Screening of Medically-Admitted Patients With Cystic Fibrosis. Psychosomatics. 2017 Aug 30.
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  12. Fisher E, Heathcote LC, Eccleston C, Simons LE, Palermo TM. Assessment of Pain Anxiety, Pain Catastrophizing, and Fear of Pain in Children and Adolescents With Chronic Pain: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. J Pediatr Psychol. 2017 Jul 25.
  13. Barber Garcia BN, Gray LS, Simons LE, Logan DE. Development of the Parent Responses to School Functioning Questionnaire. J Pain. 2017 Oct; 18(10):1277-1286.
  14. Simons LE, Pielech M, McAvoy S, Conroy C, Hogan M, Verbunt JA, Goossens ME. Photographs of Daily Activities-Youth English: validating a targeted assessment of worry and anticipated pain. Pain. 2017 May; 158(5):912-921.
  15. Flack F, Gerlach AL, Simons LE, Zernikow B, Hechler T. Validation of the German fear of pain questionnaire in a sample of children with mixed chronic pain conditions. Eur J Pain. 2017 Aug; 21(7):1224-1233.
  16. Sieberg CB, Klajn J, Wong C, Bowen G, Simons LE, Millis MB. Predictors and trajectories of chronic postoperative pain following hip preservation surgery. J Hip Preserv Surg. 2017 Jan; 4(1):45-53.
  17. Dekker C, Bastiaenen CHG, de Vries JE, Simons LE, Goossens MEJB, Verbunt JAMCF. Dutch version of the Fear of Pain Questionnaire for adolescents with chronic pain. Disabil Rehabil. 2017 Mar 03; 1-7.
  18. Robins H, Perron V, Heathcote LC, Simons LE. Pain Neuroscience Education: State of the Art and Application in Pediatrics. Children (Basel). 2016 Dec 21; 3(4).
  19. Simons LE, Goubert L, Vervoort T, Borsook D. Circles of engagement: Childhood pain and parent brain. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2016 09; 68:537-546.
  20. Basch M, Perlo S, Walker L, Simons L. (106) Children's Somatization Inventory: factor structure and clinical reference points in pediatric chronic pain. J Pain. 2016 Apr; 17(4S):S2.
  21. Kim P, Hinkle C, Zhang R, Becerra L, Borsook D, Simons L. (219) Regional brain structure differences in learning, motivation, and emotion between treatment responders and non-responders in pediatric CRPS. J Pain. 2016 Apr; 17(4S):S30.
  22. Broman E, Schild C, Basch M, Ludwig M, Kim P, Smith A, Holley A, Simons L, Wilson A. (193) PRISM: a screening measure of distress and behaviors for parents of children with chronic pain. J Pain. 2016 Apr; 17(4S):S24.
  23. Perlo S, Basch M, Smith A, Hogan M, Bebee J, Li E, Simons L. (533) Do athletes have an advantage in chronic pain treatment? Greater decreases in disability and avoidance among youth athletes enrolled in an exposure-based intervention. J Pain. 2016 Apr; 17(4S):S107-S108.
  24. Chow ET, Otis JD, Simons LE. The Longitudinal Impact of Parent Distress and Behavior on Functional Outcomes Among Youth With Chronic Pain. J Pain. 2016 06; 17(6):729-38.
  25. Simons LE. Fear of pain in children and adolescents with neuropathic pain and complex regional pain syndrome. Pain. 2016 Feb; 157 Suppl 1:S90-7.
  26. Simons LE, Erpelding N, Hernandez JM, Serrano P, Zhang K, Lebel AA, Sethna NF, Berde CB, Prabhu SP, Becerra L, Borsook D. Fear and Reward Circuit Alterations in Pediatric CRPS. Front Hum Neurosci. 2015; 9:703.
  27. Simons LE, Basch MC. State of the art in biobehavioral approaches to the management of chronic pain in childhood. Pain Manag. 2016; 6(1):49-61.
  28. Basch MC, Chow ET, Logan DE, Schechter NL, Simons LE. Perspectives on the clinical significance of functional pain syndromes in children. J Pain Res. 2015; 8:675-86.
  29. Simons LE, Smith A, Ibagon C, Coakley R, Logan DE, Schechter N, Borsook D, Hill JC. Pediatric Pain Screening Tool: rapid identification of risk in youth with pain complaints. Pain. 2015 Aug; 156(8):1511-8.
  30. Smith AM, Sieberg CB, Odell S, Randall E, Simons LE. Living Life With My Child's Pain: The Parent Pain Acceptance Questionnaire (PPAQ). Clin J Pain. 2015 Jul; 31(7):633-41.
  31. Hechler T, Kanstrup M, Holley AL, Simons LE, Wicksell R, Hirschfeld G, Zernikow B. Systematic Review on Intensive Interdisciplinary Pain Treatment of Children With Chronic Pain. Pediatrics. 2015 Jul; 136(1):115-27.
  32. Cousins LA, Kalapurakkel S, Cohen LL, Simons LE. Topical Review: Resilience Resources and Mechanisms in Pediatric Chronic Pain. J Pediatr Psychol. 2015 Oct; 40(9):840-5.
  33. Simons LE, Sieberg CB. Parents--to help or hinder pain memories in children. Pain. 2015 May; 156(5):761-2.
  34. Loiselle KA, Gutierrez-Colina AM, Eaton CK, Simons LE, Devine KA, Mee LL, Blount RL. Longitudinal stability of medication adherence among adolescent solid organ transplant recipients. Pediatr Transplant. 2015 Jun; 19(4):428-35.
  35. Simons LE, Smith A, Kaczynski K, Basch M. Living in fear of your child's pain: the Parent Fear of Pain Questionnaire. Pain. 2015 Apr; 156(4):694-702.
  36. Wu YP, Hung M, Franklin JD, Samhouri M, Simons LE, Amylon MD. Validation of a measure of children's perceptions of their oncology camp experience: a national study. Psychooncology. 2016 Jan; 25(1):112-4.
  37. Erpelding N, Simons L, Lebel A, Serrano P, Pielech M, Prabhu S, Becerra L, Borsook D. Rapid treatment-induced brain changes in pediatric CRPS. Brain Struct Funct. 2016 Mar; 221(2):1095-111.
  38. Eaton CK, Lee JL, Simons LE, Devine KA, Mee LL, Blount RL. Clinical cutoffs for adherence barriers in solid organ transplant recipients: how many is too many? J Pediatr Psychol. 2015 May; 40(4):431-41.
  39. Kalapurakkel S, Carpino EA, Lebel A, Simons LE. "Pain Can't Stop Me": Examining Pain Self-Efficacy and Acceptance as Resilience Processes Among Youth With Chronic Headache. J Pediatr Psychol. 2015 Oct; 40(9):926-33.
  40. Pielech M, Ryan M, Logan D, Kaczynski K, White MT, Simons LE. Pain catastrophizing in children with chronic pain and their parents: proposed clinical reference points and reexamination of the Pain Catastrophizing Scale measure. Pain. 2014 Nov; 155(11):2360-7.
  41. Becerra L, Sava S, Simons LE, Drosos AM, Sethna N, Berde C, Lebel AA, Borsook D. Intrinsic brain networks normalize with treatment in pediatric complex regional pain syndrome. Neuroimage Clin. 2014; 6:347-69.
  42. Cappucci S, Simons LE. Anxiety sensitivity and fear of pain in paediatric headache patients. Eur J Pain. 2015 Feb; 19(2):246-52.
  43. Simons LE, Pielech M, Erpelding N, Linnman C, Moulton E, Sava S, Lebel A, Serrano P, Sethna N, Berde C, Becerra L, Borsook D. The responsive amygdala: treatment-induced alterations in functional connectivity in pediatric complex regional pain syndrome. Pain. 2014 Sep; 155(9):1727-42.
  44. Lee JL, Eaton C, Gutiérrez-Colina AM, Devine K, Simons LE, Mee L, Blount RL. Longitudinal stability of specific barriers to medication adherence. J Pediatr Psychol. 2014 Aug; 39(7):667-76.
  45. Simons LE, Pielech M, Cappucci S, Lebel A. Fear of pain in pediatric headache. Cephalalgia. 2015 Jan; 35(1):36-44.
  46. Carpino E, Segal S, Logan D, Lebel A, Simons LE. The interplay of pain-related self-efficacy and fear on functional outcomes among youth with headache. J Pain. 2014 May; 15(5):527-34.
  47. Simons LE, Elman I, Borsook D. Psychological processing in chronic pain: a neural systems approach. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2014 Feb; 39:61-78.
  48. Sieberg CB, Simons LE, Edelstein MR, DeAngelis MR, Pielech M, Sethna N, Hresko MT. Pain prevalence and trajectories following pediatric spinal fusion surgery. J Pain. 2013 Dec; 14(12):1694-702.
  49. Erpelding N, Sava S, Simons LE, Lebel A, Serrano P, Becerra L, Borsook D. Habenula functional resting-state connectivity in pediatric CRPS. J Neurophysiol. 2014 Jan; 111(2):239-47.
  50. Pielech M, Sieberg CB, Simons LE. Connecting parents of children with chronic pain through art therapy. Clin Pract Pediatr Psychol. 2013 Sep 01; 1(3):214-226.
  51. Reed-Knight B, Loiselle KA, Devine KA, Simons LE, Mee LL, Blount RL. Health-related quality of life and perceived need for mental health services in adolescent solid organ transplant recipients. J Clin Psychol Med Settings. 2013 Mar; 20(1):88-96.
  52. Simons LE, Sieberg CB, Coakley RM. Patients with pain are not all the same: considering fear of pain and other individual factors in treatment. Pain Manag. 2013 Mar; 3(2):87-9.
  53. Simons LE. Growing up in the society of pediatric psychology: reflections of an early career psychologist. J Pediatr Psychol. 2013 Mar; 38(2):132-4.
  54. Logan DE, Carpino EA, Chiang G, Condon M, Firn E, Gaughan VJ, Hogan M, Leslie DS, Olson K, Sager S, Sethna N, Simons LE, Zurakowski D, Berde CB. A day-hospital approach to treatment of pediatric complex regional pain syndrome: initial functional outcomes. Clin J Pain. 2012 Nov-Dec; 28(9):766-74.
  55. Simons LE, Sieberg CB, Pielech M, Conroy C, Logan DE. What does it take? Comparing intensive rehabilitation to outpatient treatment for children with significant pain-related disability. J Pediatr Psychol. 2013 Mar; 38(2):213-23.
  56. Simons LE, Moulton EA, Linnman C, Carpino E, Becerra L, Borsook D. The human amygdala and pain: evidence from neuroimaging. Hum Brain Mapp. 2014 Feb; 35(2):527-38.
  57. Simons LE, Kaczynski KJ, Conroy C, Logan DE. Fear of pain in the context of intensive pain rehabilitation among children and adolescents with neuropathic pain: associations with treatment response. J Pain. 2012 Dec; 13(12):1151-61.
  58. Simons LE, Kaczynski KJ. The Fear Avoidance model of chronic pain: examination for pediatric application. J Pain. 2012 Sep; 13(9):827-35.
  59. Logan DE, Conroy C, Sieberg CB, Simons LE. Changes in willingness to self-manage pain among children and adolescents and their parents enrolled in an intensive interdisciplinary pediatric pain treatment program. Pain. 2012 Sep; 153(9):1863-70.
  60. Simons LE, Sieberg CB, Claar RL. Anxiety and impairment in a large sample of children and adolescents with chronic pain. Pain Res Manag. 2012 Mar-Apr; 17(2):93-7.
  61. Logan DE, Simons LE, Carpino EA. Too sick for school? Parent influences on school functioning among children with chronic pain. Pain. 2012 Feb; 153(2):437-43.
  62. Guite JW, Logan DE, Simons LE, Blood EA, Kerns RD. Readiness to change in pediatric chronic pain: initial validation of adolescent and parent versions of the Pain Stages of Change Questionnaire. Pain. 2011 Oct; 152(10):2301-11.
  63. Simons LE, Sieberg CB, Kaczynski KJ. Measuring parent beliefs about child acceptance of pain: a preliminary validation of the Chronic Pain Acceptance Questionnaire, parent report. Pain. 2011 Oct; 152(10):2294-300.
  64. Sieberg CB, Williams S, Simons LE. Do parent protective responses mediate the relation between parent distress and child functional disability among children with chronic pain? J Pediatr Psychol. 2011 Oct; 36(9):1043-51.
  65. Kaczynski KJ, Simons LE, Claar RL. Anxiety, coping, and disability: a test of mediation in a pediatric chronic pain sample. J Pediatr Psychol. 2011 Sep; 36(8):932-41.
  66. Claar RL, Simons LE. Adolescents' pain coping profiles: expectations for treatment, functional outcomes and adherence to psychological treatment recommendations. Pain Res Manag. 2011 May-Jun; 16(3):192-6.
  67. Simons LE, Sieberg CB, Carpino E, Logan D, Berde C. The Fear of Pain Questionnaire (FOPQ): assessment of pain-related fear among children and adolescents with chronic pain. J Pain. 2011 Jun; 12(6):677-86.
  68. Devine KA, Reed-Knight B, Loiselle KA, Simons LE, Mee LL, Blount RL. Predictors of long-term health-related quality of life in adolescent solid organ transplant recipients. J Pediatr Psychol. 2011 Sep; 36(8):891-901.
  69. Devine KA, Reed-Knight B, Simons LE, Mee LL, Blount RL. Prospective comparison of parent and adolescent report of health-related quality of life in adolescent solid organ transplant recipients. Pediatr Transplant. 2010 Dec; 14(8):1000-6.
  70. Simons LE, Logan DE, Chastain L, Cerullo M. Engagement in multidisciplinary interventions for pediatric chronic pain: parental expectations, barriers, and child outcomes. Clin J Pain. 2010 May; 26(4):291-9.
  71. Simons LE, McCormick ML, Devine K, Blount RL. Medication barriers predict adolescent transplant recipients' adherence and clinical outcomes at 18-month follow-up. J Pediatr Psychol. 2010 Oct; 35(9):1038-48.
  72. Logan DE, Simons LE. Development of a group intervention to improve school functioning in adolescents with chronic pain and depressive symptoms: a study of feasibility and preliminary efficacy. J Pediatr Psychol. 2010 Sep; 35(8):823-36.
  73. Simons LE, Logan DE, Chastain L, Stein M. The relation of social functioning to school impairment among adolescents with chronic pain. Clin J Pain. 2010 Jan; 26(1):16-22.
  74. Logan DE, Simons LE, Kaczynski KJ. School functioning in adolescents with chronic pain: the role of depressive symptoms in school impairment. J Pediatr Psychol. 2009 Sep; 34(8):882-92.
  75. Claar RL, Baber KF, Simons LE, Logan DE, Walker LS. Pain coping profiles in adolescents with chronic pain. Pain. 2008 Nov 30; 140(2):368-75.
  76. Simons LE, Gilleland J, Blount RL, Amaral S, Berg A, Mee LL. Multidimensional Adherence Classification System: initial development with adolescent transplant recipients. Pediatr Transplant. 2009 Aug; 13(5):590-8.
  77. Simons LE, McCormick ML, Mee LL, Blount RL. Parent and patient perspectives on barriers to medication adherence in adolescent transplant recipients. Pediatr Transplant. 2009 May; 13(3):338-47.
  78. Simons LE, Gilleland J, Hubbard McDanel A, Blount RL, & Campbell, R. . Initial development of the Pediatric Camp Outcome Measure . Children’s Health Care. 2008; 37:158-169.
  79. Simons LE, Claar RL, Logan DL. Chronic pain in adolescence: parental responses, adolescent coping, and their impact on adolescent's pain behaviors. J Pediatr Psychol. 2008 Sep; 33(8):894-904.
  80. Blount RL, Devine KA, Cheng PS, Simons LE, Hayutin L. The impact of adult behaviors and vocalizations on infant distress during immunizations. J Pediatr Psychol. 2008 Nov-Dec; 33(10):1163-74.
  81. Simons LE, Anglin G, Warshaw BL, Mahle WT, Vincent RN, Blount RL. Understanding the pathway between the transplant experience and health-related quality of life outcomes in adolescents. Pediatr Transplant. 2008 Mar; 12(2):187-93.
  82. Logan DE, Simons LE, Stein MJ, Chastain L. School impairment in adolescents with chronic pain. J Pain. 2008 May; 9(5):407-16.
  83. Claar RL, Simons LE, Logan DE. Parental response to children's pain: the moderating impact of children's emotional distress on symptoms and disability. Pain. 2008 Aug 15; 138(1):172-9.
  84. Scharff L & Simons L. Functional Abdominal Pain. Pain in Children: A Practical Guide for Primary Care. Eds Walco GA, Goldschneider KR. 2008.
  85. Simons L, Ingerski LM, Janicke DM. Social support, coping, and psychological distress in mothers and fathers of pediatric transplant candidates: a pilot study. Pediatr Transplant. 2007 Nov; 11(7):781-7.
  86. Simons LE, Blount RL, Campbell R, Hubbard A, Goodwin B, Devine K, Benoit M. Decreases in anxiety associated with participation in a camp for children with cardiac defects. Cardiol Young. 2007 Dec; 17(6):631-7.
  87. Blount RL, Simons LE, Devine KA, Jaaniste T, Cohen LL, Chambers CT, Hayutin LG. Evidence-based assessment of coping and stress in pediatric psychology. J Pediatr Psychol. 2008 Oct; 33(9):1021-45.
  88. Ohleyer V, Freddo M, Bagner DM, Simons LE, Geffken GR, Silverstein JH, Storch EA. Disease-related stress in parents of children who are overweight: relations with parental anxiety and childhood psychosocial functioning. J Child Health Care. 2007 Jun; 11(2):132-42.
  89. Storch EA, Lack CW, Simons LE, Goodman WK, Murphy TK, Geffken GR. A measure of functional impairment in youth with Tourette's syndrome. J Pediatr Psychol. 2007 Sep; 32(8):950-9.
  90. Simons LE, Blount RL. Identifying barriers to medication adherence in adolescent transplant recipients. J Pediatr Psychol. 2007 Aug; 32(7):831-44.
  91. Kendrick T, Simons L, Mynors-Wallis L, Gray A, Lathlean J, Pickering R, Harris S, Rivero-Arias O, Gerard K, Thompson C. Cost-effectiveness of referral for generic care or problem-solving treatment from community mental health nurses, compared with usual general practitioner care for common mental disorders: Randomised controlled trial. Br J Psychiatry. 2006 Jul; 189:50-9.
  92. Kendrick T, Simons L, Mynors-Wallis L, Gray A, Lathlean J, Pickering R, Harris S, Rivero-Arias O, Gerard K, Thompson C. A trial of problem-solving by community mental health nurses for anxiety, depression and life difficulties among general practice patients. The CPN-GP study. Health Technol Assess. 2005 Sep; 9(37):1-104, iii.
  93. Simons, L.E., Hubbard, A., Campbell, R.M., & Blount, R.L. . Reductions in parental separation anxiety and self-reported anxiety in pediatric heart patients who attended a one-week pediatric camp. . Cardiology in the Young. 2005; 15:95-108.
  94. Seri, L., Heimler, E., Benoit-Ratcliff, M., Simons, L., & Blount, R. . Development of the child-adult medical procedure interaction scale-infant form. Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. 2003; 24:391.
  95. Patterson, S.M., Simons, L., France, C.R., & Tulodzieski, B. Relationship between hydration status and cardiovascular reactivity: Physiological versus psychological challenge. Psychophysiology. 2001; 38:S75.
  96. France, C.R., Simons, L., Patterson, S.M., & Tulodzieski, B. Vasovagal reactions to a surgery film: Physiological and psychological concomitants. Psychophysiology. 2001; 38:S42.
To schedule an appointment: Call (617) 355-6995


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