Pain Management Interventions for Hip Fracture
Measuring Pain in Clinical Studies (1)
A patient’s self-report of pain is the standard for evaluating the character and intensity of pain. There is no consensus about how to determine a clinically significant reduction in pain. Two methods are commonly used in clinical studies to measure the intensity of pain. When using the visual analog scale (VAS) the patient indicates the severity of pain by pointing to a position on a scale, usually a 10-cm line where the far left represents no pain and the far right represents the worst pain conceivable. In using numerical scales, the patient is instructed to indicate a number, for example between 0 and 10, where 0 is no pain and 10 is the worst pain ever, to describe the severity of pain. Numerical scales and the VAS show a linear correlation.
Keywords: numerical scale | pain | pain management | pain measurement | VAS | visual analog scale | hip fracture
- Abou-Setta AM, Beaupre LA, Jones CA, et al. Pain Management Interventions for Hip Fracture. AHRQ Comparative Effectiveness Review No. 30 (Prepared by the University of Alberta Evidence-based Practice Center under Contract No. 290-02-0023). Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; May 2011. AHRQ Publication No. 11-EHC022-EF.
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