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Pain Management

Pain Management

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Pain Management

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  1. Pain Management Objectives: to describe basic pain management techniques related to types of pain, how to recognize pain, and how to use pharmacological and non-pharmacological pain treatments.

  2. Objectives cont. • Understand how the management of pain affects the quality of life. • Develop an awareness of misconceptions and consequences of untreated pain. • Recognize different types of pain and identify appropriate traditional and non-traditional treatments • Utilize pain assessment tools as needed for patients. • Understand that all caregivers have a role in assessment and treatment of pain.

  3. Introduction • Pain is the conscious experience of discomfort. • Nociceptors transmit pain action potentials to the brain • One person’s report of severe pain may seem like almost nothing compared to another. • Caregiver’s challenge is to assess all relevant factors without imposing personal biases. • Patients' self-report of pain is the single most reliable indicator of pain.

  4. Common Misconceptions about Pain • The caregiver is the best judge of pain. • A person with pain will always have obvious signs such as moaning, abnormal vital signs, or not eating. • Pain is a normal part of aging. • Morphine and other strong pain relievers should be reserved for the late stages of dying. • Anxiety always makes pain worse.

  5. Consequences of Untreated Pain/Mistreated Pain • Poor appetite and weight loss • Disturbed sleep • Withdrawal from talking or social activities • Sadness, anxiety, or depression • Physical and verbal aggression, wandering, acting-out behavior, resists care • Difficulty walking or transferring; may become bed bound • Incontinence, skin ulcers, impaired immune function

  6. Descriptions of Pain(Duration) Acute Pain Brief duration, goes away with healing, usually 6 months or less. • Not necessarily more severe than chronic • May be sudden onset or slow in onset • Examples are broken bones, strep throat, and pain after surgery or injury

  7. Descriptions of Pain(Duration) Chronic (cancer) Pain Pain is expected to have an end, with cure or with death. • Aggressive treatment • Addiction not a concern

  8. Categories of Pain by Duration Chronic Non-Malignant Pain Pain has no predictable ending • Difficult to find specific cause • Often can’t be cured • Frequently undertreated • Depression common

  9. Categories of Pain by Type Somatic Source: Skin, muscle, and connective tissue Examples: Sprains, headaches, arthritis Description: Localized, sharp/dull, worse with movement or touch Pain med: Most pain meds will help, if severe, need a stronger medication

  10. Categories of Pain by Type Visceral Source: Internal organs Examples: Tumor growth, gastritis, chest pain Description: Not localized, refers, constant and dull, less affected with movement Pain Med: Stronger pain medications

  11. Categories of Pain by Type Neuropathic Source: Nerves Examples: Diabetic neuropathy, phantom limb pain, cancer spread to nerve plexis Description: Burning, stabbing, pins and needles, shock-like, shooting Pain Meds: Opioates+tricyclic antidepressants

  12. Other Types of Pain • Referred Pain- pain felt in part of the body, other than the source

  13. Other Types of Pain • Phantom Pain- Althoughthe limb is no longer there, the nerve endings at the site of the amputation continue to send pain signals to the brain that make the brain think the limb is still there. Sometimes, the brain memory of pain is retained and is interpreted as pain, regardless of signals from injured nerves.

  14. Pain Assessment Asking about pain is an important part of ALL assessments!! • Should be done: periodically, after a treatment, when a change in physical or mental status is noted • Assessments to identify and treat pain must be ongoing. • Elderly residents require frequent monitoring for pain.

  15. Non-Traditional Treatments for Pain • Hypnosis- behavioral suggestion therapy, lower state of consciousness • Meditation-peaceful state of consciousness • Thermal Therapy- adding moist or dry heat • Acupuncture-systematic pricking the skin with needles • Acupressure-pressure points

  16. Non-Traditional Treatments for Pain • Imagery- imaging a peaceful situation • Distraction-providing another event or idea to distract the brain from the pain source • Biofeedback- Electrical stimulation • TENS- low voltage electrical currents

  17. Traditional Treatments for Pain Rules of thumb, common sense rules: • Use the lowest effective dose by the simplest route. • Assess side effects and Treat or prevent side effects, such as constipation and nausea. Change medication as necessary. • Reevaluate and adjust medications at regular intervals and as necessary. • Do not stop pain medication in terminal patients. Change the route if needed.

  18. Managing Pain • Always report pain. Pain IS NOT a normal part of aging. • Use relaxation methods to decrease anxiety and muscle tension. • Incorporate Non-traditional treatments when possible • Music, art, and meditation can be very helpful.

  19. Pain Management Risks • NSAIDS risk gastric, liver, and renal toxicity • Drug interactions common • Side effects • Elderly at risk for both under and over treatment of pain.