Acute pain management in the opioid-tolerant patient
Nicola Bourne Senior clinical nurse specialist, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, London
The main goals in treating acute pain in opioid-tolerant patients are effective pain relief and prevention of withdrawal symptoms. This article provides an overview of the issues that practitioners need to consider when caring for potential and actual opioid-tolerant patients experiencing acute pain, for example following surgery or injury. It highlights the importance of a multimodal analgesic approach to pain control and the prevention of withdrawal. It defines the terminology used in managing opioid-tolerant patients in order to allay healthcare professionals’ misconceptions.
Nursing Standard. 25, 12,35-39. doi: 10.7748/ns2010.11.25.12.35.c8112Correspondence
This article has been subject to double blind peer review