CONTROLLING PAIN: Managing procedural pain

December 2004 
Volume 34  Number 12
Pages 76 - 76
  PDF Version Available!



    QUESTION: When we prepare patients for procedures, such as chest tube insertion or suctioning, we explain the procedure, but we don't always talk with them about pain management. How can we prepare a patient for possible discomfort during a procedure and make sure he gets adequate pain relief?

    ANSWER: Start by telling him what to expect about pain with the procedure and discussing pain management options. This can ease the anxiety he's likely to experience as he anticipates the procedure. Find out what type of pain management has worked for him in the past. Don't assume that you know what he'll consider painful. Here are some guidelines:

    * Remember that sedation isn't analgesia. Even a sedated patient can feel pain and needs pain medication.

    * For common procedures such as dressing changes or chest tube insertion, have protocols to ensure that adequate pain management is provided consistently ...

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