Fact Sheets

Note: The fact sheets are in Portable Document Format (PDF) and require a compatible reader to view them. We suggest Adobe Acrobat Reader, which can be downloaded at the Adobe site.

These fact sheets are available in: English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, German, Polish, Arabic, Chinese, and Serbian. 

Acute Pain and Surgery

"Pain after surgery is a compilation of several unpleasant sensory, emotional, and mental experiences, associated with autonomic, endocrine-metabolic, physiological, and behavioral responses." [English]


Principles of Emergency Department Pain Management for Patients with Acutely Painful Medical Conditions

"Pain is the most common reason for people to seek health care, and as a presenting complaint, it accounts for more than two-thirds of visits to the emergency department. Major categories of acutely painful medical conditions include myofascial back or neck pain, abdominal pain, headache, chest pain, and pain secondary to upper-respiratory infections." [English]


What is the Problem?

"Despite substantial advances in pain research in recent decades, inadequate acute pain control is still more the rule than the exception. Numerous studies show that fewer than half of postoperative patients receive adequate pain relief." [English]

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Interventions: Benefits and Barriers

"Opioids target endogenous pain modulation processes. Other agents such as anticonvulsants influence acute pain by diverse mechanisms. In postoperative settings, many acute pain management specialists combine several interventions for 'multimodal analgesia.'" [English]

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Mechanisms of Acute Pain

"Patients with surgery, injury, childbirth, and acute illness experience pain caused by damage to a variety of tissues. Commonly injured tissues include skin, muscle, bone, tendons, ligaments, and visceral organs." [English]

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Acute Pain Medicine: Where Is the Evidence?

"Evidence supporting acute pain medicine has increased greatly over the last two decades...Not only has the quantity of evidence increased, but the quality of that evidence has improved and the scope of the evidence available has broadened." [English] SpanishFrenchPortugueseGermanPolish LithuanianArabicChineseSerbian

Why the Gaps between Evidence and Practice?

"Gaps between evidence and practice are of several types. Some reflect general barriers to the implementation of evidence-based and outcomes-driven practice...Other barriers of particular relevance to optimal acute pain management reflect failure to address long-standing, prevalent myths about acute pain and the importance of its control." [English]

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How to Implement Change

"In spite of high-quality evidence and sophisticated medical and nonmedical treatment options, there is widespread underassessment and undertreatment of acute pain...What should be done to facilitate implementation of change?" [English]

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