Tonya M Palermo, PHD

Tonya M Palermo, PHD


"Through my research, I want to improve the lives of children with pain and their families and learn ways to prevent development of chronic pain."
  • Biography

    Dr. Tonya Palermo is Professor of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine at University of Washington with adjunct appointments in Pediatrics and Psychiatry. She holds the Hughes M. and Katherine Blake Endowed Professorship in Health Psychology. Dr. Palermo serves as Vice Chair for Research for the Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine. At Seattle Children’s Research Institute, Dr. Palermo serves as Interim Director of the Center for Child Health, Behavior and Development. Dr. Palermo completed her undergraduate training at UCLA in Psychology and her PhD at Case Western Reserve University in Clinical Psychology. She completed residency training at Ohio State University followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in pediatric pain management at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital.

    Dr. Palermo has been in Seattle since 2010 where she directs the Pediatric Pain & Sleep Innovations Lab. The focus of her research is on behavioral, psychosocial and family factors that affect pain experiences, the interrelationship of sleep and pain, and innovative psychological treatments for managing and preventing chronic pain. Currently, Dr. Palermo serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Pain. Dr. Palermo has developed and evaluated several internet and mobile applications to deliver cognitive-behavioral interventions for chronic pain, has published over 290 articles, and has published two books on cognitive-behavioral therapy. She is active in training clinician-scientists at the postdoctoral and faculty level and directs the T32 postdoctoral training program in anesthesiology research at the University of Washington.

    Board Certification(s)



    Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH


    Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital Cardiology GM, Cleveland, OH

    Clinical Interests

    Pediatric chronic and recurrent pain, sleep disorders in children
    Psychological treatment of pediatric chronic pain, use of innovative technology to deliver treatment, sleep-wake disturbances

  • Related Resources

    • Pediatric Pain & Sleep Innovations Lab

      The Pediatric Pain and Sleep Innovations Lab’s research focus is on pain in children.

    • Seattle Concussion Research Collaborative

      We are the Seattle Concussion Research Collaborative (SCRC) lab, housed at Seattle Children’s Research Institute. Our lab is comprised of clinicians, researchers, public health specialists, and community representatives who are working together to better understand concussion risk and concussion prevention in children,

  • Patient Testimonials

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  • Awards and Honors

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  • Publications

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  • Clinical Trials and Research Studies

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