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Trauma patients still experience pain a year after injury

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MANY trauma patients are still experiencing moderate to severe pain 12 months after sustaining their injuries, according to a study.

Findings were based on pain surveys of 3,047 trauma patients aged 18 to 84, who were asked to rate pain on a scale of one to ten, with ten being the most intense.

After a year, 62.7% of patients still reported pain, and the average rating was 5.5%, and pain was most common in the 35-44 years age group.

Authors write: ‘The findings of this study suggest that interventions to decrease chronic pain in trauma patients are needed,’

‘The high prevalence of pain, its severity and its effect on functioning warrant such interventions. This may consist of interventions during the acute phase of hospitalization to aggressively treat early pain and better manage neuropathic pain.’

Archives of Surgery (2008) 134:282-287

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