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Scandinavian Journal of Pain

Official Journal of the Scandinavian Association for the Study of Pain

Editor-in-Chief: Werner, Mads

CiteScore 2018: 0.85

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

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Volume 16, Issue 1


Pain assessment and post-operative pain management in orthopedic patients

W. Schmelling / J.N. Poulsen / L. Christrup
  • Department of Pharmacology and Pharmaco-therapy, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ P. Gazerani
Published Online: 2017-07-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sjpain.2017.04.048



A fast-track based surgical treatment reduces morbidity and hospital stay by providing early mobilization. Sufficient postoperative pain management is mandatory for early mobilization and optimal utilization of rehabilitation measures. Insufficient postoperative pain management is however a widespread problem. Lack of knowledge about pain and pain treatment among health care professionals and general community has been considered as a major potential contributor in insufficient pain management. It has been suggested that severe postoperative pain might imply a potential risk of developing chronic pain. The purpose of this study was to examine this problem in acute and elective surgical patients in department of orthopedic surgery at Bispebjerg Hospital in order to identify obstacles and possibilities for future improvement.


Questionnaires were developed and distributed to patients consisted of 10 acute admitted and 10 elective orthopedic patients. The patients’ pain scores were recorded with a 0–10 NRS scale. The scores were obtained for current pain in rest, current pain in activity, and the highest and lowest pain intensity for the last 24 hours. Data were handled using descriptive statistics.


The goal for sufficient pain treatment was patients with pain score at ≤ 3 NRS at rest and ≤ 5 in activity. For pain at rest 45% of the patients were within the goal range and 55% for the current pain in activity. For the mildest pain experienced in the last 24 h, 75% and for the worst pain experienced 30% of the patients reached the goal.


Corresponding to similar studies, half of the patients received a sufficient pain treatment at the time of examination. The consequences for insufficient pain management would be reduced effect of the physiotherapy, reduced ability to handle every day activity, sleep disturbances, and potential risk of developing chronic pain.

About the article

Published Online: 2017-07-01

Published in Print: 2017-07-01

Citation Information: Scandinavian Journal of Pain, Volume 16, Issue 1, Pages 181–181, ISSN (Online) 1877-8879, ISSN (Print) 1877-8860, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sjpain.2017.04.048.

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