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Supplement Article  |   June 1999
Management of acute pain
Article Information
Pain Management/Palliative Care
Supplement Article   |   June 1999
Management of acute pain
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, June 1999, Vol. 99, S1-S5. doi:10.7556/jaoa.1999.99.6.S1
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, June 1999, Vol. 99, S1-S5. doi:10.7556/jaoa.1999.99.6.S1
Abstract

In the United States, acute pain is still an undertreated condition. Effective management requires: (1) an understanding of the neurophysiologic, pathologic, sociologic, psychologic, and spiritual components present in the suffering patient; (2) proper and continual assessment using a pain scale (preferably 0 to 10); (3) charting the pain as the fifth vital sign; (4) use of preemptive analgesia to reduce postsurgical pain; (5) knowledge of barriers that exist among healthcare professionals, patients, and health care systems so that they can be countered; (6) recognition that neuropathic pain may be more effectively treated with local anesthestics, antidepressants, and anticonvulsants than with opioids; (7) knowledge that in certain conditions, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs will be more effective than acetaminophen. The physician must also clearly understand that opioids do not cause addiction (psychological dependence). Osteopathic physicians also have the additional benefit of providing nonpharmacologic treatment to patients presenting with acute pain.