Turkish Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2008 , Vol 54 , Num 4

Nurses’ Approaches Towards the Pain Problem of Patients Admitted to Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Inpatient and Outpatient Clinics

Nuran Akdemir 1 ,İmatullah Akyar 1 ,Ülkü Görgülü 2
1 Hacettepe Üniversitesi Sağlık Bilimleri Fakültesi, Hemşirelik Bölümü İç Hastalıkları Hemşireliği Anabilim Dalı, Ankara
2 Gazi Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Hemşirelik Yüksekokulu, Ankara

Objective: Chronic pain complaints are mostly made by rheumatology patients and patients admitted to physical therapy and rehabilitation inpatient and outpatient clinics. Due to the subjective and objective qualifications of pain; defining pain in these patients is difficult. Clinical observations and study results of pain treatment showed that, like other health professionals, nurses also do not have sufficient knowledge and ability for pain management and they pay attention to acute pain rather than chronic pain. The aim of the study is to determine the approaches of the nurses working in physical treatment and rehabilitation inpatient and outpatient clinics to defining, evaluating and managing pain. 

Materials and Methods: The research was conducted as a descriptive study in four university hospitals in Ankara who agreed to join the study, between May 15-June 29, 2007 with 27 nurses. Written permission was obtained from the institutions, oral permission was given by the nurses and a questionnaire, developed by the researchers by reviewing the literature, was used for data collection. Percentage values were used to evaluate the data.

Results: In this study it was found that of the nurses who joined the study to evaluate patient pain; 70.4% used scales for evaluating pain, 36.9% used a visual analog scale and 44.4% of nurses did not know the name of the scale they used. 89.5% of nurses who used the scale used it for all the patients in clinics, 36.8% of them use a scale in the admission process and vital sign evaluating process; 76.2% of them consider using the scale according to pain severity. It was determined that 90% of nurses use pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic approaches together to manage pain. 

Conclusion: Nurses use scales for evaluating pain. They consider using scales according to the pain severity and vital signs and use both pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches to manage pain. 

Keywords : Rehabilitation, rehabilitation services, pain evaluation, nurse