Nursing Care Plan For Pain


Nursing Care Plan For Pain

How do you write a nursing diagnosis for pain?

Nursing Care Plan 3 – Nursing Diagnosis: Acute Pain related to psychological distress as evidenced by patient verbalizing pain, moaning and crying, narrowed focus and altered passage of time, and pallor. Desired Outcome : Within 4 hours of nursing interventions, the patient will demonstrate a reduction in crying and pain verbalization.

Intervention Rationale
Assess to what extent cultural, environmental, intrapersonal, and intrapsychic factors may be contributing to pain. These influences alter the patient’s expression of the pain experienced. This assessment can be used to evaluate each patient’s unique response.
Respond immediately to reports of pain. If the patient is experiencing an altered passage of time due to pain, fear about delayed pain relief can exacerbate the pain experience. Prompt responses to reports of pain reduce anxiety and promote trust.
Promote periods of rest for the patient. Fatigue can contribute to pain. A quiet, darkened room with minimal noise and interruptions can promote rest and reduce pain.
Use relaxation and breathing exercises and/or music therapy. These techniques help produce a sense of tranquility for the patient. The goal is to reduce pain related to tension or stress,

What is the nursing intervention for pain?

Provide pharmacologic pain management – 4. Provide pharmacologic pain management as ordered. Pain management using pharmacologic methods involves using opioids ( narcotics ), nonopioids ( NSAIDs ), and co analgesic drugs. The World Health Organization (WHO) published guidelines on the logical usage of analgesics to treat cancer using a three-step ladder approach – also known as the analgesic ladder,

  • Step 1: For mild pain (1 to 3 pain rating), the WHO analgesic ladder suggests the use of nonopioid analgesics with or without coanalgesics. If pain persists or increases despite providing full doses, then proceed to the next step.
  • Step 2: For moderate pain (4 to 6 pain rating), opioid, or a combination of opioid and nonopioid is administered with or without conanalgesics.
  • Step 3: For severe pain (7 to 10), the opioid is administered and titrated in ATC scheduled doses until the pain is relieved.

4.1. Administer nonopioids including acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin or ibuprofen, as ordered. NSAIDs work in peripheral tissues. Some block the synthesis of prostaglandins, which stimulate nociceptors. They are effective in managing mild to moderate pain.

  1. All NSAIDs have anti-inflammatory (except for acetaminophen), analgesic, and antipyretic effects.
  2. They work by inhibiting the enzyme cyclooxygenase (COX), a chemical activated during tissue damage, resulting in decreased synthesis of prostaglandins.
  3. NSAIDs also have a ceiling effect.
  4. Once the maximum analgesic benefit is achieved, additional amounts of the same drug will not produce more analgesia and may risk the patient for toxicity.

Common side effects of NSAIDs include heartburn or indigestion. There is also a possibility of forming a small stomach ulcer due to platelet aggregation. To prevent these side effects, clients should be taught to take NSAIDs with food and a full glass of water.

  • Aspirin, It can prolong bleeding time and should be stopped a week before a client undergoes any surgical procedure. Should never be given to children below 12 years of age due to the possibility of Reye’s syndrome. May cause excessive anticoagulation if the client is taking warfarin,
  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol). May have serious hepatotoxic side effects and possible renal toxicity with high dosages or with long-term use. Limit acetaminophen usage to 3 grams per day.
  • Celecoxib (Celebrex). Is a COX-2 inhibitor that has fewer GI side effects than COX-1 NSAIDs.

For the full list, please visit: Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) and Related Agents 4.2. Administer opioids as ordered. Opioids are indicated for severe pain and can be administered orally, IV, PCA systems, or epidurally.

  • Opioids for moderate pain. These include codeine, hydrocodone, and tramadol (Ultram) which are combinations of nonopioid and opioid.
  • Opioids for severe pain. These include morphine, hydromorphone, oxycodone, methadone, and fentanyl. Most of these are controlled substances due to potential misuse. These drugs are indicated for severe pain, or when other medications fail to control pain.

For the full list, please visit: Narcotics, Narcotic Antagonists, and Antimigraine Agents 4.3. Administer coanalgesics (adjuvants), as ordered. Coanalgesics are medications that are not classified as pain medication but have properties that may reduce pain alone or in combination with other analgesics.

  • Antidepressants, Is a common coanalgesic that helps in increasing pain relief, improving mood, and reducing excitability.
  • Local Anes t hetics, These drugs block the transmission of pain signals and are used for pain in specific areas of nerve distribution.
  • Other coanalgesics. Include anxiolytics, sedatives, and antispasmodics to relieve other discomforts. Stimulants, laxatives, and antiemetics are other coanalgesics that reduce the side effects of analgesics.

5. Manage acute pain using a multimodal approach. A multimodal approach is based on using two or more distinct methods or drugs to enhance pain relief (rather than resorting to opioid use or other pain management strategies alone). Different combinations of analgesic medications, adjuvants, and procedures can act on different sites and pathways in an additive or synergistic fashion.

  1. Combining medications and techniques allows the lowest effective dose of each drug to be administered, resulting in reduced side effects.6.
  2. Administer analgesia before painful procedures whenever possible.
  3. Doing so will help prevent pain caused by relatively painful procedures (e.g., wound care, venipunctures, chest tube removal, endotracheal suctioning, etc.).7.

Perform nursing care during the peak effect of analgesics. Oral analgesics typically peak in 60 minutes, and intravenous analgesics in 20 minutes. Performing nursing tasks during the peak effect of analgesics optimizes client comfort and compliance in care.8.

What should the nurse assess about pain?

Introduction – Pain assessment is crucial if pain management is to be effective. Nurses are in a unique position to assess pain as they have the most contact with the child and their family in hospital. Pain is the most common symptom children experience in hospital.

  1. Acute pain (noiciception) is associated with tissue damage and an inflammatory response, it is self limiting of short duration and does not involve neural tissue.
  2. Pain is multidimensional therefore assessment must include the intensity, location, duration and description, the impact on activity and the factors that may influence the child’s perception of pain (bio psychosocial phenomenon) The influences that may alter pain perception and coping strategies include social history/issues, cultural and religious beliefs, past pain experiences and the first pain experience.

In addition family response to their child in pain can have a negative or positive influence.

What nursing care interventions would you provide for a client who is suffering from pain?

General interventions for chronic pain management – 1. Allow the client to maintain a diary of pain ratings, timing, precipitating events, medications, treatments, and what works best to relieve pain. Review this routinely. Systematic tracking of pain appears to be an important factor in improving pain management.

  1. Self-reported assessment tools such as pain diaries are easily implemented and have been shown to have high reliability, validity, and utility.
  2. Because they allow clients to monitor fluctuations in their daily pain levels as well as the effect of therapeutic interventions, pain diaries can enhance the sense of self-control and facilitate communication with caregivers,

(Charoenpol et al., 2022) 2. Recognize and convey acceptance of the client’s pain experience. Conveying acceptance of the client’s pain promotes a more cooperative nurse -client relationship. Nurses may tend to underestimate the client’s degree of suffering, believing that the client’s self-reports about pain are exaggerated.

To reduce the suffering of clients, as primary caregivers, nurses must have adequate knowledge and a proper attitude toward pain management (Kahsay & Pitkäjärvi, 2019).3. Aid the client in making decisions about choosing a particular pain management strategy. The nurse can increase the client’s willingness to adopt new interventions to promote pain relief through guidance and support.

The client may begin to feel confident regarding the effectiveness of these interventions. Pain therapy requires an individualized approach, perhaps more so than any other health problem. The nature of pain and the extent to which it affects an individual’s physical and psychosocial well-being determines the choice of pain-relief therapies.

  • A nurse, client, and, frequently, family caregivers are partners in pain management.4.
  • Explore the need for medications from the three classes of analgesics: opioids ( narcotics ), non-opioids (acetaminophen, Cox-2 inhibitors, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ), and adjuvant medications.
  • The most common treatment for pain relief is analgesics.
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However, healthcare professionals still tend to undertreat clients because of incorrect drug information, concerns about addiction, anxiety over errors in using opioid analgesics, and administration of less medication than was ordered. Therefore, nurses must ensure their understanding of the drugs available for pain relief and their pharmacological effects.5.

  • If the client is receiving parenteral analgesia, use an equianalgesic chart to convert to an oral or another noninvasive route as smoothly as possible.
  • The least invasive route of administration capable of providing adequate pain control is recommended.
  • The oral route is the most preferred because it is the most convenient and cost-effective.

Avoid the intramuscular (IM) and subcutaneous routes because of unreliable absorption, pain, and inconvenience. Equianalgesic charts show the conversion of one opioid to another and of parenteral forms of opioids to oral forms. These charts are available in nursing units, in the pharmacy, and in printed and online drug resources.

  1. Nurses on succeeding shifts need to know the route of administration that is most effective for a client so that the client has controlled, sustained pain relief.6.
  2. Allow the client to describe appetite, bowel elimination, and ability to rest and sleep.
  3. Administer medications and treatments to improve these functions.

Always obtain a prescription for a peristaltic stimulant to prevent opioid-induced constipation. Because there is great individual variation in the development of opioid-induced side effects, they should be monitored and, if their development is inevitable (e.g., constipation), prophylactically treated.

  1. Opioids cause constipation by decreasing bowel peristalsis,
  2. Because of the distribution of opioid receptors both within and outside the nervous system, opioid analgesics produce a broad spectrum of adverse effects (Cohen et al., 2022).7.
  3. Obtain prescriptions to increase or decrease analgesic doses when indicated.

Base prescriptions on the client’s report of pain severity and the comfort/function goal and response to the previous dose in terms of relief, side effects, and ability to perform the daily activities and the prescribed therapeutic regimen. Opioid doses should be adjusted individually to achieve pain relief with an acceptable level of adverse effects.

The effectiveness of opioids for pain relief can vary depending on people’s individual differences in metabolism. Some are classified as poor, intermediate, extensive, and ultra-rapid metabolizers. Body size has little to do with appropriate opioid dosing.8. If an opioid dose is increased, monitor sedation and respiratory status for a brief time.

Clients receiving long-term opioid therapy generally develop tolerance to the respiratory depressant effects of these agents. Large doses may lead to respiratory depression and hypotension, Always assess the client for the level of alertness and respiratory status before administering an opioid.

  1. Excessive sedation will precede respiratory depression.
  2. Respiratory depression can be treated with naloxone, an opioid antagonist.
  3. See also: Narcotics, Narcotic Antagonists, and Antimigraine Agents Nursing Drug Guide 9.
  4. Educate the client on the pain management approach that has been ordered, including therapies, medication administration, side effects, and complications.

One of the most important steps toward improved control of pain is a better client understanding of the nature of pain, its treatment, and the role client needs to play in pain control. Clients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals sometimes have beliefs about pain or pain management strategies that interfere with the treatment plan.

  1. The nurse must remain open to the client’s description of pain and work with the client and caregivers to provide pain control.
  2. Clients and caregivers tend to cope more effectively when they are well informed.
  3. If the client is discharged from the facility with a prescription for opioids, teach the family how to monitor for excessive sedation and to call the healthcare provider if pain relief is not adequate.10.

Discuss the client’s fears of undertreated pain, addiction, and overdose. Because of the various misconceptions concerning pain and its treatment, education about the ability to control pain effectively and the correction of myths about the use of opioids should be included as part of the treatment plan.

  • The beliefs of healthcare professionals can also interfere with pain management.
  • The nurse should always keep in mind that pain is invisible to others but it exists when the client says it does.
  • It exists even when there are no sure signs of pain or an apparent cause.
  • One family member may worry that pain medication may make the client nonfunctional; whereas others might fear addiction to pain medication even though non-narcotic analgesics are not addictive.

These misconceptions must be corrected to help the client cooperate more willingly with the treatment plan.11. Maintain the client’s use of nonpharmacological methods to control pain, such as distraction, imagery, relaxation, massage, and heat and cold application.

  • Cognitive-behavioral strategies can restore clients’ sense of self-control, personal efficacy, and active participation in their own care.
  • Integrating complementary therapies into a pain management plan can help ease chronic pain and reduce the need for medication therapy.
  • These nonpharmacological methods can prompt the release of endogenous opioids.

They offer an alternative for people with mild pain who do not wish to take potent drugs for pain relief.12. Implement nonpharmacological interventions when pain is relatively well-controlled with pharmacological interventions. Non pharmacological interventions should be used to reinforce, not replace, pharmacological interventions.

They should be used as an adjunct to pharmacological therapies for clients with moderate to severe pain. One recent survey demonstrated that over 70% of clients with chronic pain have used complementary therapies and that levels of client satisfaction were higher in the group using CAM (Mills et al., 2016).13.

Plan care activities around periods of greatest comfort whenever possible. Pain diminishes activity. Removing noxious stimuli is especially important for clients who are immobile. Pain can be prevented by anticipating painful activities such as ambulation or turning.

Before performing a procedure, consider the client’s condition, aspects of the procedure that are painful, and ways to avoid causing pain. Consideration of the client’s comfort and a little extra time are needed to avoid pain-producing situations.14. Examine relevant resources for the management of pain on a long-term basis (e.g., hospice, pain care center).

Most clients with cancer or chronic nonmalignant pain are treated for pain in outpatient and home care settings. Plans should be made to secure ongoing assessment of the pain and the effectiveness of treatments in these settings. Palliative care offers treatments to help clients live perhaps years with a variety of incurable conditions including persistent pain.

  1. Hospice programs care for clients who are terminally ill by helping them continue to live at home in comfort and privacy with the help of a healthcare team.
  2. The American Nurses Association and the American Society for Pain Management Nursing support aggressive treatment of pain and suffering at the end of life.15.

If the client has growing cancer pain, assist the client and family with managing issues related to death and dying and pain management at the end of life. Support groups and pastoral counseling may improve the client’s and families coping skills and give needed support.

  • Some cancer pain is intractable and difficult to treat.
  • It becomes so debilitating that clients will try anything to gain relief.
  • National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) guidelines promote treating cancer pain in a more comprehensive and aggressive manner, providing clients and family caregivers with more options for pain relief.

The best choice of treatment often changes when a client’s condition and the characteristics of pain change.16. If the client has chronic nonmalignant pain, help the client and family in lessening the effects of pain on interpersonal relationships and daily activities such as work and recreation.

  1. Pain lessens the client’s options to exercise control, diminishes psychological well-being, and makes them feel helpless and vulnerable.
  2. Therefore, nurses should support active client involvement in effective and practical methods to manage pain.
  3. Part of pain management is helping clients to actively participate in their own well-being whenever possible.

Common holistic health approaches include wellness education, regular exercise, rest, attention to good nutrition and hygiene practices, and management of interpersonal relationships. Health promotion still involves the use of nonpharmacological and pharmacological therapies when a person develops more intense pain.17.

Validate the client’s feelings and emotions regarding current health status. Validation lets the client know the nurse has heard and understands what was said, and it promotes the nurse-client relationship. Many nurses avoid acknowledging clients’ pain because of fear of contributing to medication addiction (Wells et al., 2008).

These fears and beliefs lead to mistrust, increased client recovery time, complications, mortality, psychological problems, and increased cost. If the client senses doubt from the nurse regarding their pain, they may share little information. Establishing a caring relationship allows the nurse for open communication with the client.18.

Refer the client and family to community support groups and self-help groups for people coping with chronic pain. This is to reduce the burden of suffering associated with chronic pain and provides additional resources like client support networks. Co-produced peer support groups after pain management programs can be a low-cost, effective, social intervention, providing emotional, practical, and social benefits, with improved self-management skills, stronger social connections, and some reduced use of health services (Farr et al., 2021).19.

Refer the client to a physical therapist for assessment and evaluation. This is helpful to promote muscle strength and joint mobility, and therapies to promote the relaxation of tense muscles, the physical therapist can help the client with exercises suitable for his/her condition.

  1. These interventions can influence the effectiveness of pain management.
  2. A comprehensive program should be tailored to the client’s needs.
  3. For example, low-level aerobic exercise for fibromyalgia; strength training for back pain associated with deconditioning; flexibility training for arthritis and trigger points; and balance training for clients with pain-induced weakness at risk for falls (Cohen et al., 2021).20.
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Provide the client and family with adequate information about chronic pain and options available for pain management. A lack of knowledge about the characteristics of chronic pain and pain management strategies can add to the burden of pain in the client’s life.

What are the 11 components of pain assessment?

Patients should be asked to describe their pain in terms of the following characteristics: location, radiation, mode of onset, character, temporal pattern, exacerbating and relieving factors, and intensity. The Joint Commission updated the assessment of pain to include focusing on how it affects patients’ function.

Is pain a priority nursing diagnosis?

Is acute pain a priority nursing diagnosis? Yes. It should be one of the first priorities.

What are the 7 attributes of pain?

Assessing the seven dimensions of pain Despite advances in pain-management education, many nurses aren’t familiar with the multidimensional aspects of pain—highlighted more than a decade ago by the National Institutes of Health and more recently by the American Society for Pain Management Nursing.

What are three 3 ways to assess pain?

Self-report pain assessment tools – Multidimensional tools are used for an initial comprehensive pain assessment. They evaluate the sensory component of pain (what the person is feeling), the emotional response to pain (impact on the person’s function and relationships, and the meaning of the pain) and quality of life (activities, mood, sleep). The following tools may be used.

Short-form McGill questionnaire Brief pain inventory – short form Brief pain inventory – long form Pain disability index.

Unidimensional pain assessment tools are used for ongoing evaluation of pain intensity and response to treatment. They evaluate only the sensory component of pain. Examples include:

Numeric Rating Scale (NRS) Verbal Descriptor Scale (VDS) Pain thermometer Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) A pictorial pain scale (FACES pain scale).

Some patients prefer to use numbers to describe their pain, while others prefer words. If you are not successful in using one type of self-report tool with an older person, try a different tool.

What are the 5 nursing interventions?

Function – The nursing process functions as a systematic guide to client-centered care with 5 sequential steps. These are assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, and evaluation. Assessment Assessment is the first step and involves critical thinking skills and data collection; subjective and objective.

  1. Subjective data involves verbal statements from the patient or caregiver.
  2. Objective data is measurable, tangible data such as vital signs, intake and output, and height and weight.
  3. Data may come from the patient directly or from primary caregivers who may or may not be direct relation family members.
  4. Friends can play a role in data collection.

Electronic health records may populate data and assist in assessment. Critical thinking skills are essential to assessment, thus the need for concept-based curriculum changes. Diagnosis The formulation of a nursing diagnosis by employing clinical judgment assists in the planning and implementation of patient care.

  • The North American Nursing Diagnosis Association (NANDA) provides nurses with an up-to-date list of nursing diagnoses.
  • A nursing diagnosis, according to NANDA, is defined as a clinical judgment about responses to actual or potential health problems on the part of the patient, family, or community.
  • A nursing diagnosis encompasses Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and helps to prioritize and plan care based on patient-centered outcomes.

In 1943, Abraham Maslow developed a hierarchy based on basic fundamental needs innate to all individuals. Basic physiological needs/goals must be met before higher needs/goals can be achieved such as self-esteem and self-actualization. Physiological and safety needs provide the basis for the implementation of nursing care and nursing interventions.

  • Basic Physiological Needs: Nutrition (water and food), elimination (Toileting), airway (suction)-breathing (oxygen)-circulation (pulse, cardiac monitor, blood pressure) (ABCs), sleep, sex, shelter, and exercise.
  • Safety and Security: Injury prevention (side rails, call lights, hand hygiene, isolation, suicide precautions, fall precautions, car seats, helmets, seat belts), fostering a climate of trust and safety (therapeutic relationship), patient education (modifiable risk factors for stroke, heart disease).
  • Love and Belonging: Foster supportive relationships, methods to avoid social isolation (bullying), employ active listening techniques, therapeutic communication, and sexual intimacy.
  • Self-Esteem: Acceptance in the community, workforce, personal achievement, sense of control or empowerment, accepting one’s physical appearance or body habitus.
  • Self-Actualization: Empowering environment, spiritual growth, ability to recognize the point of view of others, reaching one’s maximum potential.

Planning The planning stage is where goals and outcomes are formulated that directly impact patient care based on EDP guidelines. These patient-specific goals and the attainment of such assist in ensuring a positive outcome. Nursing care plans are essential in this phase of goal setting.

  1. Care plans provide a course of direction for personalized care tailored to an individual’s unique needs.
  2. Overall condition and comorbid conditions play a role in the construction of a care plan.
  3. Care plans enhance communication, documentation, reimbursement, and continuity of care across the healthcare continuum.

Goals should be:

  1. Specific
  2. Measurable or Meaningful
  3. Attainable or Action-Oriented
  4. Realistic or Results-Oriented
  5. Timely or Time-Oriented

Implementation Implementation is the step that involves action or doing and the actual carrying out of nursing interventions outlined in the plan of care. This phase requires nursing interventions such as applying a cardiac monitor or oxygen, direct or indirect care, medication administration, standard treatment protocols, and EDP standards.

  • Evaluation This final step of the nursing process is vital to a positive patient outcome.
  • Whenever a healthcare provider intervenes or implements care, they must reassess or evaluate to ensure the desired outcome has been met.
  • Reassessment may frequently be needed depending upon overall patient condition.

The plan of care may be adapted based on new assessment data.

What are the 7 nursing interventions?

How Are Nursing Interventions Classified? – There is a wide variety of medical needs and conditions that nurses help patients fight and overcome. Based on the medical needs they cater to, nursing interventions are further classified into seven important categories: community, family, behavioral, physiological basic, physiological complex, safety, and health system.

What are the 5 priorities of nursing care?

Getting the priorities right in end-of-life care – PubMed Clipboard, Search History, and several other advanced features are temporarily unavailable. The,gov means it’s official. Federal government websites often end in,gov or,mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site. The site is secure. The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely. Display options Format Abstract PubMed PMID The Leadership Alliance for the Care of Dying People has drawn up five priorities for the care of dying people.

  • The priorities replace the Liverpool Care Pathway, which was widely criticised for promoting a tick-box approach to the care of the dying.
  • The five priorities focus on: recognising that someone is dying; communicating sensitively with them and their family; involving them in decisions; supporting them and their family; and creating an individual plan of care that includes adequate nutrition and hydration.

The alliance has outlined the duties and responsibilities of nurses and other health professionals when caring for people at the end of their lives, with an emphasis on compassionate care.

Regan A, Colling J. Regan A, et al. Nurs Stand.2015 Feb 17;29(24):51-8. doi: 10.7748/ns.29.24.51.e9710. Nurs Stand.2015. PMID: 25669820 Sykes N. Sykes N. Br Med Bull.2015 Sep;115(1):143-50. doi: 10.1093/bmb/ldv030. Epub 2015 Jul 4. Br Med Bull.2015. PMID: 26142453 Review. Middleton-Green L. Middleton-Green L. Br J Community Nurs.2014 May;19(5):250-4. doi: 10.12968/bjcn.2014.19.5.250. Br J Community Nurs.2014. PMID: 24784561 De Lisle-Porter M, Podruchny AM. De Lisle-Porter M, et al. Neonatal Netw.2009 Mar-Apr;28(2):75-83. doi: 10.1891/0730-0832.28.2.75. Neonatal Netw.2009. PMID: 19332405 Copnell B. Copnell B. Crit Care Nurs Clin North Am.2005 Dec;17(4):349-60, x. doi: 10.1016/j.ccell.2005.07.007. Crit Care Nurs Clin North Am.2005. PMID: 16344205 Review.

How do you list a nursing diagnosis?

Components of a Nursing Diagnosis – A nursing diagnosis has typically three components: (1) the problem and its definition, (2) the etiology, and (3) the defining characteristics or risk factors (for risk diagnosis).

What are the top 3 nursing diagnosis?

What is the most common nursing diagnosis? According to NANDA, some of the most common nursing diagnoses include pain, risk of infection, constipation, and body temperature imbalance.

What are the 4 steps of pain management?

Pain Processes – Figure 7-1 illustrates the major components of the brain systems involved in processing pain-related information. There are four major processes: transduction, transmission, modulation, and perception. Transduction refers to the processes by which tissue-damaging stimuli activate nerve endings.

  • Transmission refers to the relay functions by which the message is carried from the site of tissue injury to the brain regions underlying perception.
  • Modulation is a recently discovered neural process that acts specifically to reduce activity in the transmission system.
  • Perception is the subjective awareness produced by sensory signals; it involves the integration of many sensory messages into a coherent and meaningful whole.
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Perception is a complex function of several processes, including attention, expectation, and interpretation.

What is the goal of treatment for pain?

Enhancement of Physical Functioning – In group-based pain management programs, patients are encouraged to participate regularly in exercise (including stretching, cardiovascular conditioning, and weight training), and to increase their activity under supervision.

How do you describe a patient’s pain?

Patients should be asked to describe their pain in terms of the following characteristics: location, radiation, mode of onset, character, temporal pattern, exacerbating and relieving factors, and intensity. The Joint Commission updated the assessment of pain to include focusing on how it affects patients’ function.

Is pain a priority nursing diagnosis?

Is acute pain a priority nursing diagnosis? Yes. It should be one of the first priorities.

What is the nursing diagnosis of chronic pain?

Pain can be considered acute or chronic. Chronic pain occurs when pain signals continue to fire in the nervous system. This is ongoing, lasting longer than the typical healing timeframe which is typically defined as pain that is present for longer than 3-6 months.

  • Every person will experience pain differently and every individual’s tolerance for pain will be different.
  • Overtime, constant pain can begin to affect other areas of a person’s life including their daily activities.
  • Likewise, individuals suffering from chronic pain are also at an increased risk of depression and anxiety,

Individuals may also begin experiencing sleep disturbances due to the pain they experience.

How do you diagnose pain?

Diagnosing and Treating Pain



There is no way to tell how much pain a person has. No test can measure the intensity of pain, no imaging device can show pain, and no instrument can locate pain precisely. Sometimes, as in the case of headaches, physicians find that the best aid to diagnosis is the patient’s own description of the type, duration, and location of pain. Defining pain as sharp or dull, constant or intermittent, burning or aching may give the best clues to the cause of pain. These descriptions are part of what is called the pain history, taken by the physician during the preliminary examination of a patient with pain. Assessing MS Pain Pain is measured by what the person with pain says it is. Pain is measured by doctor’s on a numeric scale of ‘no pain’ to the ‘worst ever pain’. Pain is measured by the affect it has on activities of sleep, play, work, relationships and mood. The measures help providers understand the intensity and the severity of pain, and whether treatments for pain are making a difference. Keeping a pain journal, recording when, where and how long pain lasts, describing the pain (aching, pulling, sharp, cramping, burning, stabbing), recording what makes pain better or worse and what treatments are used is important to appropriate pain treatment. Perhaps one of the most commonly used pain scales in healthcare, the numerical rating scale offers the individual in pain to rate their pain score. The numerical scale gives the option to verbally rate their scale from 0 to 10 or to place a mark on a line indicating their level of pain.0 indictates the absence of pain, while 10 represents the most intense pain possible. This allows the healthcare provider to rate pain as mild, moderate or severe, which can indicate a potential disability level.

1 – Pain is very mild, barely noticeable. Most of the time you don’t think about it.
2 – Minor pain. Annoying and may have occasional stronger twinges.
3 – Pain is noticeable and distracting, however, you can get used to it and adapt.


4 – Moderate pain. If you are deeply involved in an activity, it can be ignored for a period of time, but is still distracting. 5 – Moderately strong pain. It can’t be ignored for more than a few minutes, but with effort you still can manage to work or participate in some social activities. 6 – Moderately strong pain that interferes with normal daily activities. Difficulty concentrating.


7 – Severe pain that dominates your senses and significantly limits your ability to perform normal daily activities or maintain social relationships. Interferes with sleep. 8 – Intense pain. Physical activity is severely limited. Conversing requires great effort. 9 – Excruciating pain. Unable to converse. Crying out and/or moaning uncontrollably. 10 – Unspeakable pain. Bedridden and possibly delirious. Very few people will ever experience this level of pain.


Measuring pain can also be done by using The World Health Organization (WHO) “pain ladder” to describe its guideline for the use of drugs in the management of pain. The general principle is to start with first step drugs, and then to climb the ladder if pain is still present.

Mild pain is self-limited. It goes away either with no therapy at all or with the use of nonprescription medication such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin, or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Moderate pain is worse than mild pain and can interfere with function. You may be unable to ignore the pain and go on with all of the activities of daily living, but it goes away after a while and doesn’t come back after it has been treated. Moderate pain may need stronger medications than acetaminophen or nonprescription NSAIDs. Most NSAIDs, including ibuprofen (Motrin), have been found to be as effective at relieving pain as codeine. Severe pain is defined as pain that interferes with some or all of the activities of daily living. May cause bed confinement or chair rest because of the severity. Typically doesn’t go away, and treatment needs to be continuous for days, weeks, months, or years. For severe pain, strong opioids such as morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, hydromorphone, methadone, or fentanyl, as well as other medications (called adjuvant therapies) as needed for the particular kind of pain.

image info This image is Copyright © and falls under Image License E defined under the Image License section of the Disclaimer page. Recognizing that the severity and intensity of pain is influenced by anxiety, stress and depression is important to pain treatment.

Understanding the influence of individual beliefs about pain, such as negative thinking that pain is overtaking life is important to managing pain. Recognizing individual strengths and coping strategies is important to managing pain. Finally, knowing who is there to help is important to pain management.

Physicians, however, do have a number of technologies they use to find the cause of pain. Primarily these include:

Electrodiagnostic procedures include electromyography (EMG), nerve conduction studies, and evoked potential (EP) studies :

EMG can help physicians tell precisely which muscles or nerves are affected by weakness or pain. Thin needles are inserted in muscles and a physician can see or listen to electrical signals displayed on an EMG machine. Nerve conduction studies the doctor uses two sets of electrodes (similar to those used during an electrocardiogram) that are placed on the skin over the muscles. The first set gives the patient a mild shock that stimulates the nerve that runs to that muscle. The second set of electrodes is used to make a recording of the nerve’s electrical signals, and from this information the doctor can determine if there is nerve damage. EP studies also involve two sets of electrodes-one set for stimulating a nerve (these electrodes are attached to a limb) and another set on the scalp for recording the speed of nerve signal transmission to the brain.


Imaging, especially magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), provides physicians with pictures of the body’s structures and tissues. MRI uses magnetic fields and radio waves to differentiate between healthy and diseased tissue.
A neurological examination in which the physician tests movement, reflexes, sensation, balance, and coordination.
X-rays produce pictures of the body’s structures, such as bones and joints.


To help with the pain and its reduction, exercise and physical therapy may help to decrease spasticity and soreness of muscles. Those with MS, however, may not always have the ability or endurance to do sufficient aerobic exercise. Regular stretching exercises do tend to help flexor spasms. Relaxation techniques such as progressive relaxation, meditation and deep breathing can contribute to the management of chronic pain. Other techniques which may help pain include massage, ultrasound, chiropractic treatments, hydrotherapy, acupuncture, transcutaneous nerve stimulation (TENS), moist heat and ice.