Unrelieved pain can be harmful, especially when you are sick or after surgery. Pain can make it difficult to take a deep breath and interferes with your ability to move and walk. This can result in complications and a longer stay in the hospital.
Your nurses and doctors will ask you to rate your pain on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 being no pain and 10 being the worst pain you can imagine.
Using the Pain Scale, you will be asked to set a comfort goal. If you are unable to maintain this level of comfort, especially during activities such as deep breathing and walking, let your nurse or doctor know.
It is important to tell your doctor or nurse of any unusual signs or symptoms. Most common side effects include:
Nausea or vomiting
Itching or rash
These side effects can be managed but you must let someone know. You will be monitored for other, less common side effects, including respiratory depressions, which occur in less than 1 percent of patients.
Report pain promptly. Pain is more diffcult to treat when it becomes severe.
Work with your doctor and nurse to set a comfort goal and to develop a plan to manage pain.
Help your doctor and nurse to measure your pain by rating pain on scale of 0–10 and describing pain as accurately as possible.
Tell the doctor or nurse about any pain that is not relieved with treatment.
Do not worry about getting “hooked” on pain medication.
Report all other medications you are taking, prescribed and not prescribed.
Help determine other methods of effective pain relief including use of heat or cold, massage, positioning, distraction, etc.
Wong-Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale
Worst Possible Pain
Rate Your Pain
On the chart above, indicate how much pain you have.
Your comfort goal is _____________.
From Wong D. L., Hackenberry-Eaton M., Wilson D., Winkelstein M. L., Schwartz P.; Wong’s Essentials of Pediatric Nursing, ed. 6, St. Louis, 2001, p.1301. Copyrighted by Mosby, Inc. Reprinted by permission.
Treatment for Pain
The following methods of pain control may be used, depending on the amount and type of pain that you have.