As per the definition given by the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP), pain is an unpleasant experience that is associated with actual or potential tissue damage. It can be acute or chronic, and inadequate treatment of acute pain may lead to chronic pain. The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations recognized pain as the fifth vital sign in 1999. The objective now is to achieve a "pain-free" emergency room by implementing concepts such as regional analgesia, multimodal analgesia, and pre-emptive analgesia to minimize chronic pain.
The Department of Emergency Medicine at Sterling Hospitals Gurukul Ahmedabad is equipped to manage acute pain through various methods, which include:
- Medications: The emergency department has access to a range of analgesic medications to manage acute pain. These medications can be administered orally, intravenously, or through injections, depending on the severity of the pain.
- Regional anesthesia: Regional anesthesia techniques such as nerve blocks and epidural analgesia can be used to manage pain in specific areas of the body. These techniques can be particularly effective for managing pain associated with fractures and injuries to the extremities.
- Non-pharmacological methods: The emergency department also employs non-pharmacological methods such as distraction techniques, guided imagery, and relaxation exercises to manage acute pain.
- Patient-controlled analgesia: Patients with severe pain can be provided with patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) pumps that allow them to self-administer medication at preset intervals.
- Collaborative care: The emergency department collaborates closely with other departments, such as the Pain Management Center, to provide comprehensive pain management to patients who require ongoing care for chronic pain.
Our goal is to provide timely and effective pain relief to our patients, while minimizing the risk of adverse events associated with pain management. We follow a multidisciplinary approach to acute pain management, which includes physicians, nurses, and other healthcare professionals working together to provide the best possible care to our patients.