Keri Hainsworth, PhD

  • Investigator, Children's Wisconsin's Research Institute
  • Associate professor, Anesthesiology, Medical College of Wisconsin




  • Anesthesiology

Research interests

  • Pain management
  • Behavioral health
  • Pediatric obesity

Study interests

  • Co-occurring pain and obesity
  • Psychosocial health
  • Health-related quality of Life


  • Doctorate, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, 1994
  • Post-doctoral fellowship, Medical College of Wisconsin, 2005-2006

Dr. Hainsworth is a research psychologist with special interest in pediatric pain. Her research interests focus on the interrelationships between pain and obesity in children and adolescents. Dr. Hainsworth has shown that youth who experience both chronic pain and obesity have significantly lower quality of life than youth with chronic pain alone or obesity alone. She has also shown that youth with co-occurring pain and obesity have altered pain thresholds. Subsequent studies will be directed at elucidating the mechanisms underlying pain in this population. In addition, she has designed and conducted a number of studies focused on the benefits of yoga for children and adolescents. The study samples have included youth with chronic headache pain, youth with pediatric obesity and a sample of high school sophomores.

As well as conducting her own research, Dr. Hainsworth currently serves as the Research Director of the Jane B. Pettit Pain and Headache Center at Children’s Wisconsin. The Pain Management Center includes anesthesiologists, a clinical psychologist, advanced practice nurses, and nurses specializing in chronic pain. The Center’s research program covers a broad range of areas important to acute and chronic pain management, such as optimal opioid delivery systems, post-surgical pain management, and the study of biopsychosocial factors that impact patients’ lives. The Center is known for our inclusion of integrative medicine and a biopsychosocial approach to pediatric pain.

To contact Dr. Hainsworth, please call (414) 266-6306 or e-mail

Education and Awards



  • American Psychological Association Dissertation Research Award
  • 2006 - Medical College of Wisconsin Postdoctoral Travel Award
  • Sept. 2006 - Midwest Pain Society, First Place Poster Award: The impact of overweight on health-related quality of life in children and adolescents with chronic pain
  • Sept. 2010 - Louis A. Goldstein Award for the best clinic poster presentation at the 2010 Scoliosis Research Society Annual Meeting. This award Presented annually for the presentation which best exemplifies the ideal and philosophy of Louis A. Goldstein, M.D. and the Scoliosis Research Society relative to the causes, cures and prevention of scoliosis and related deformities.
  • Jan. 2011 - Jane B. Pettit Pain and Palliative Care Center, 2011 American Pain Society, Clinical Center of Excellence Award (Our clinic is one of only five pediatric pain clinics to have received this prestigious award)
  • Oct. - 2011 International Society for Quality of Life Research Conference, Outstanding Poster Award

Research and publications


  • Evaluation of Yoga for the Treatment of Pediatric Chronic Pain, Medical College of Wisconsin Research Affairs Committee, principal investigator
  • Yoga for Pediatric Obesity: Examining Barriers to Physical Activity, Greater Milwaukee Foundation, Russell and Betty Shaw Fund, principal investigator
  • A Study of Sensory Dysfunction in Children with Chronic Pain and Obesity: Quantitative Sensory Testing, Children's Research Institute, principal investigator
  • Biomechanical Evaluation of Yoga for Pediatric Obesity, Greater Milwaukee Foundation, Russell and Betty Jane Shaw Fund, principal investigator
  • Parent/nurse controlled analgesia for post-operative pain management in Neonates: A preliminary randomized controlled trial.CTSI, Co-principal investigator