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Scandinavian Journal of Pain

Official Journal of the Scandinavian Association for the Study of Pain

Editor-in-Chief: Breivik, Harald


CiteScore 2018: 0.85

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.494
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.427

Online
ISSN
1877-8879
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Volume 15, Issue 1

Issues

Acute pain in the emergency department: Effect of an educational intervention

Kristian Dahl Friesgaard / Charlotte Paltved / Lone Nikolajsen
  • Danish Pain Research Center Department of Clinical Medicine, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark
  • Department of Anesthesiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark
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Published Online: 2017-04-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sjpain.2016.11.004

Abstract

Background and aims

Pain management is often inadequate in emergency departments (ED) despite the availability of effective analgesics. Interventions to change professional behavior may therefore help to improve the management of pain within the ED. We hypothesized that a 2-h educational intervention combining e-learning and simulation would result in improved pain treatment of ED patients with pain.

Methods

Data were collected at the ED of Horsens Regional Hospital during a 3-week study period in March 2015. Pain intensity (NRS, 0–10) and analgesic administration were recorded 24 h a day for all patients who were admitted to the ED during the first and third study weeks. Fifty-three ED nurses and 14 ED residents participated in the educational intervention, which took place in the second study week.

Results

In total, 247 of 796 patients had pain >3 on the NRS at the admission to the ED and were included in the data analysis. The theoretical knowledge of pain management among nurses and residents increased as assessed by a multiple choice test performed before and after the educational intervention (P = 0.001), but no change in clinical practice could be observed: The administration for analgesics [OR: 1.79 (0.97–3.33)] and for opioids [2.02 (0.79–5.18)] were similar before and after the educational intervention, as was the rate of clinically meaningful pain reduction (NRS >2) during the ED stay [OR: 0.81 (CI 0.45–1.44)].

Conclusions

Conduction of a 2-h educational intervention combining interactive case-based e-learning with simulation-based training in an ED setting was feasible with a high participation rate of nurses and residents. Their knowledge of pain management increased after completion of the program, but transfer of the new knowledge into clinical practice could not be found. Future research should explore the effects of repeated education of healthcare providers on pain management.

Implications

It is essential for nurses and residents in emergency departments to have the basic theoretical and practical skills to treat acute pain properly. A modern approach including e-learning and simulation lead to increased knowledge of acute pain management. Further studies are needed to show how this increased knowledge is transferred into clinical practice.

Keywords: Emergency department; Acute pain; Education; e-Learning; Medical simulation

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About the article

Department of Anesthesiology, Horsens Regional Hospital, Sundvej 30, 8700 Horsens, Denmark.


Received: 2016-09-16

Revised: 2016-11-11

Accepted: 2016-11-13

Published Online: 2017-04-01

Published in Print: 2017-04-01


Ethical issues: The local ethics committee of Central Denmark Region was consulted and they replied that ethical approval was not required for this study according to the Scientific Ethical Committees Act (section 14, subsection 1). Reference number 307/2014.

Conflicts of interest: The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Funding: The Regional Postgraduate Medical Education Administration Office North and The Health Research Fund of Central Denmark Region funded this project.


Citation Information: Scandinavian Journal of Pain, Volume 15, Issue 1, Pages 8–13, ISSN (Online) 1877-8879, ISSN (Print) 1877-8860, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sjpain.2016.11.004.

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