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Pain management: steps for better care and faster recovery after surgery

Nurses are vital to good pain management – and this starts with a comprehensive assessment
Rachael Ward and Corrine Shore undertaking a pain assessment with a patient

Nurses are vital to good pain management – and this starts with a comprehensive assessment of the patient

  • Experts advise nurses take a structured approach to pain assessment, using a multidimensional tool
  • Listening to the individual and understanding the impact of pain on their daily life is as important as measuring pain intensity
  • RCN’s knowledge and skills framework for pain management can be used by the whole nursing team and is being adapted for use in Australia and New Zealand

For patients having surgery, managing their pain effectively is key to a speedy and full recovery – and nurses play a pivotal role in assessing and treating pain.

‘The impact of persistent pain after surgery is much more highly recognised now,’ says

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