Observation of pain assessment and management- the complexities of clinical practice

Manias, Elizabeth, Botti, Mari and Bucknall, Tracey 2002, Observation of pain assessment and management- the complexities of clinical practice, Journal of clinical nursing, vol. 11, no. 6, pp. 724-733.

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Title Observation of pain assessment and management- the complexities of clinical practice
Author(s) Manias, Elizabeth
Botti, Mari
Bucknall, Tracey
Journal name Journal of clinical nursing
Volume number 11
Issue number 6
Start page 724
End page 733
Publisher Wiley Interscience
Place of publication Malden, Mass.
Publication date 2002-11
ISSN 0962-1067
1365-2702
Keyword(s) decision-making
observation
pain management
pain assessment
Summary • Pain assessment and management are complex issues that embrace physiological, emotional, cognitive, and social dimensions.

• This observational study sought to investigate nurse–patient interactions associated with pain assessment and management in hospitalized postsurgical patients in clinical practice settings.

• Twelve field observations were carried out on Registered Nurses' activities relating to pain with their assigned patients. All nurses were involved in direct patient care in one surgical unit of a metropolitan teaching hospital in Melbourne, Australia. Six observation times were identified as key periods for activities relating to pain, which included change of shift and high activity periods. Each observation period lasted 2 hours and was examined on two occasions.

• Four major themes were identified as barriers to effective pain management: nurses' responses to interruptions of activities relating to pain, nurses' attentiveness to patient cues of pain, nurses' varying interpretations of pain, and nurses' attempts to address competing demands of nurses, doctors and patients.

• These findings provide some understanding of the complexities impacting on nurses' assessment and management of postoperative pain. Further research using this observational methodology is indicated to examine these influences in more depth. This knowledge may form the basis for developing and evaluating strategic intervention programmes that analyse nurses' management of postoperative pain and, in particular, their administration of opioid analgesics.


Notes Published Online: 11 Nov 2002
Language eng
Field of Research 111099 Nursing not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2008, Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30006443

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Nursing and Midwifery
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