Pain Assessment

Well-validated pain assessment tools are available. 3 Tools specific to an age group or developmental stage should be selected. Children who are developmentally delayed, emotionally disturbed, or non-English speaking require special assessment. Pain severity in infants must be inferred from physiologic and behavioral responses, but for the toddler and older child, subjective measures can be included. Parental involvement in pain assessment can be a valuable adjunct for relieving pain and anxiety.4 Finally, pain measurement should be repeated and improvement assessed until pain has abated.

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