POST-OPERATIVE PAIN MANAGEMENT – CURRENTLY UNMET NEEDS AND DEFICITS
Postoperative pain is an important issue that affects a large number of patients across Europe. An estimated 234 million major surgical procedures are undertaken each year worldwide.1 Therefore it is not surprising that over the last two decades numerous guidelines on managing post-operative acute pain were published2-5 and that there is a variety of effective analgesics available. It is of major importance that patients undergoing surgery receive an adequate pain management, since poor management of post-operative pain is not only one of the three most common medical causes of delayed discharge after ambulatory surgery6, but it can also lead to severe medical complications.7-8
However, the literature reflects that post-operative pain management has improved little for patients and is still inadequate.9-11 A great number of patients still experience a significant amount of post-operative pain: 55% of surgical patients are dissatisfied with their pain management and 30% reported that their pain management was inadequately effective.12 Analgesic gaps also remain an issue with current post-operative pain management: 12% of IV PCA patients experience analgesic gaps caused by equipment issues such as kinks in tubing and catheter infiltration or displacement13. In the case of nurse-controlled administration, there can be a gap of up to 40 minutes or more between the patient requesting an analgesic and actually receiving it.14
Not all healthcare professionals are aware of the shortfalls in post-operative pain management. Therefore CHANGE PAIN aims to raise awareness about currently unmet needs and deficits in post-operative pain management. Furthermore, CHANGE PAIN aims to provide product independent services and solutions, in order to support health care professionals in their daily work managing post-operative pain.
1 Weiser TG et al. Lancet. 2008;372:139-44.
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