Literature Review on Pain Assesment


The importance of evidence based practice has been emphasised by many key health care organisations, giving the opportunity and responsibility for nurses to commit to evaluating current clinical practice and identify research to improve care (NICE,2010; NMC,2008). The importance of evaluating care standards is paramount in determining whether clinical standards and set guidelines are being achieved in practice. Nursing research has become a helpful asset to the health care systems when contending with the rising costs of health care and ever growing vast services available to the nation. Through the use of research, nursing practice has aided in the health service in remaining sustainable by becoming more strategic and cost effective (DOH, 2008).
This literature review is based on postoperative pain assessment within a ward setting. It is the purpose of this literature review to collate, critically evaluate and synthesise the literature on the most current issues surrounding the pain assessment process. By examining primary sourced data the aim of this study is to gain an impartial, comprehensive view of the pain assessment process. Through the main body of this literature review, themes will be identified regarding both the patient and nurse perspective and barriers to the equality in pain management care. A conclusion and recommendations will then be offered based on the results.
Over half a billion pounds is spent on pain medication annually by the National Health Service and this is expected to rise with the age of the population (Donaldson, 2008). With such advancement in analgesia, nursing staff must understand the influences in the pain assessment process which is resulting in inadequate pain relief being such prevalence in hospitals (Bedard et al., 2006; Devine et al.,1999; McCaffery et al.,2000; Watt-Watson et al., 2001). Several studies have shown the detrimental effects of high levels of postoperative pain (Lyn et al., 2005; Fortier et...