Swedish nurse researchers have called for greater pain assessment in hospitals after finding 65% of patients have problems.
Nearly two-thirds of the 759 hospital inpatients who took part in a survey had experienced pain in the last 24 hours and 42% of those rated their pain as more than seven out of ten, where 10 was the worst pain imaginable.
Although 80% of patients had been asked about their pain levels by staff, less than half of those had been asked to rate their pain on a simple scale.
The authors said: “Using a pain assessment tool such as the Numeric Rating Scale helps patients to express their pain, makes them feel involved in their care and improves communication.”
- Wadensten B, et al. Why is pain still not being assessed adequately? Results of a pain prevalence study in a university hospital in Sweden. Journal of Clinical Nursing (2011) 20: 624-634
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