An overview of the behavioral medical strategies used by psychologists in German speaking countries is presented and exemplified by the work with patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Introducing epidemiologic data, the necessity of qualified patients information and education about their diagnosis, course, prognosis and therapeutic strategies are highlighted. Seven different strategies of psychological therapy are described and classified, and their efficiency for pain reduction is discussed. A comprehensive pain therapeutic program, developed by Rehfisch et al. (1988) is presented which consists of 12 structured but individually-tailored sessions. Some evaluative results of that program are given.