AbstractAimsTo determine if pain is assessed, documented, and treated in a university hospital according to recommended practice.MethodsA cross-sectional descriptive study, conducted in 23 medical and surgical wards in a university hospital. Participants were patients hospitalized for at least 24hours, ≥18 years of age, and able to participate. Data were collected from patients with a questionnaire (APS-POQ-R), from their medical records, and from Therapy®, the hospital medication system.ResultsThe response rate was 73%. Participants (N =308) mean age was 67.5 years (SD = 17.4), 50.5% were women. Pain prevalence in the past 24 h was 83.1% and severe pain was experienced by 34.5%. Descriptions of pain were documented for 60.7%. Standardized methods of assessment were used in 11.6% of patients, other forms of documentation included descriptions as “no pain-complaints”, and “patient received 2 Panodil”. The majority of patients (66.8%) were prescribed pain medications and 34.0% of patients used non-pharmacological methods to treat their pain. The pain management index (PMI = prescribed pain medication – worst pain severity) was negative for 38.6% indicating insufficient treatment. The PMI was more favorable in surgical compared to medical patients, x2(6, N = 306) = 17.81, p = 0.007.ConclusionsPain was both prevalent and severe. Although some form of documentation of pain was recorded for the majority of patients, pain was rarely assessed with standardized methods. Many patients did not receive adequate treatment. There is a need to improve the pain management practices in the hospital, with an initial emphasis on pain assessment.
Scandinavian Journal of Pain – de Gruyter
Published: Oct 1, 2013
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