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A Study and Survey on Pain and Pain Relief

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Literature Review (Articles on the Topic of Pain)
  3. Methods
  4. Findings- Frequencies
    Findings- Crosstabs
  5. Conclusion

Introduction

Pain is a significant public health problem, with many different origins and treatments. I surveyed my statistics class on the topics of pain and pain relief to learn about their personal experiences with physical pain, and the methods they used to relieve that pain. I found that the majority of the class has suffered from pain, and many individuals have a significant history with that pain. Also, the class has had a variety of experiences with pain relief, and whether they have sought medical attention has an effect on their methods and opinions. Those who had a greater history with physical pain were more likely to seek medical attention; and of the individuals who sought medical attention, they were more likely to use pain medication and relief strategies, and were more successful in their attempts.

Literature Review (Articles on the Topic of Pain)

The first article “‘Is There Any Way I Can Get Something For My Pain?’ Patient Strategies for Requesting Analgesics” is from the journal Elsevier. It was composed by Mara Buchbinder, Rachel Wibur, Samuel McLean, and Betsy Sleath. The second article “Treatment of Chronic Pain in Children and Adolescents” is from the journal Future Medicine. It was written by Shahram Yazdani and Lonnie Zeltzer.

“Patient Strategies for Requesting Analgesics” reports on a communication study focused on back pain patients. A random, but diverse sample was selected from English-speaking patients age 18 or older with back pain as a primary complaint. Back pain was chosen since it is one of the most common complaints, therefore, the sample would be the least limited and easiest to obtain. The conversations between the patients and providers were recorded and then analyzed to determine the different request strategies for pain medication. “Treatment of Chronic Pain in Children and Adolescents” accounts for extensive research done on chronic pain. Key points emphasized during the research process include, how optimal chronic pain treatment for adults differs from that of adolescents and children; how pain medicine may not provide sufficient relief; the impact pain has on an individual; and the necessity of other pain relief strategies in addition to medication. The article analyzes the general concepts on chronic pain, then relates them to children particularly. Finally, the article provides the research done on the benefits and risks of different pain medications, and the significance of nonpharmacologic treatments.

At the conclusion of the communication study from “Patient Strategies for Requesting Analgesics” three basic patterns were identified: “direct requests, indirect requests, and no request” (Buchbinder et al., 139). It was seen that “not all patients with pain seek medical attention because they desire medication.” In fact, “patients come to the clinical encounter with a variety of hopes and expectations of which a desire for an analgesic may only be part of the picture” (Buchbinder et al., 142).

The research reported in “Treatment of Chronic Pain in Children and Adolescents” identifies some other methods in relieving pain. An important development is the “pain rehabilitation model” in which function is emphasized first, with the belief that “significant pain reduction comes later” (Yazdani et al., 11). It was discovered that medicine alone is not always entirely effective. “Physical therapies and complimentary treatments…can significantly help in reaching an optimal outcome.” (Yazdani et al., 11). Additionally, it was found to be a major problem that children and adolescents were being medically treated in the same manner as adults. It was concluded that this method must be re-evaluated and “future drug trials aimed at treating children and adolescents with chronic pain may better enable clinicians to optimize treatment” (Yazdani et al., 11).

Methods

I used a simple random sample to select 20 students from my statistics class. I distributed to them a survey containing 20 well-worded questions involving physical pain and pain relief. The topics included in the survey were: general history with physical pain, specific history with pain, methods of pain relief, pain medication, and opinions on pain relief. Using the data I have found the following information:

Findings- Frequencies

First, I was interested in the demographics of the students in the class. I asked them two basic questions: if they are male or female, and if they had ever sought medical attention for pain relief. I found that the majority, about 61%, of the class is female. The clear majority, about 78% of the class has sought medical attention for pain relief.

Next, I wanted to know about the general history of the class with physical pain. I asked them three questions about their history: whether they had suffered from any physical pain, how long they had suffered from pain, and how often the pain they had experienced occurred. I found that the majority, about 94%, had suffered from physical pain. About 67% of them had suffered from pain for up to two months. And 50% suffered from this pain on a daily basis.

I then asked more specific questions about the class’s history with physical pain. I had four questions: what the main source of their pain was, how severe the pain they experienced was, if they had ever missed a prior commitment because of their pain, and whether they had suffered from back pain. I found that the majority of the class, about 56%, acquired their pain from a sports injury The plurality, about 33%, ranked their pain as either a two or a three on a scale of one to four (four being the worst, and one being the slightest discomfort). The majority, about 72%, had missed a prior commitment due to their pain. And about 72% had suffered from back pain.

I was then interested in the methods of pain relief used by the class. I asked five questions on this topic: what ways they had attempted to relieve their pain, the alternate methods they had used to relieve their pain, how many times they had used therapy methods, how successful their attempts to relieve their pain were, and how many times they had visited the doctor concerning their pain. The plurality of the class, about 44%, used a combination of medication and therapy methods to relieve their pain. About 56% used icing as a therapy method. The plurality, about 39%, had either not used any therapy methods, or had used therapy methods four or more times. Around 72% were moderately successful in their attempts to relieve their pain. And the plurality, about 28%, had visited a doctor once concerning their pain.

Then, I wanted to know specifically about pain medication. I asked the class four questions on this topic: whether they had taken over the counter medicine for the purpose of pain relief, whether they had ever requested pain medicine in a hospital setting, whether they had been prescribed pain medication, and how significant to them the possible side effects of the medication are. The plurality, about 33%, had taken over the counter medicine once for the purpose of pain relief. About 61% had requested pain medication. The majority, about 78%, had been prescribed pain medication. And the plurality of the class, about 33%, either believed that the side effects were moderately significant or moderately insignificant in their decision whether to use it.

Finally, I was interested in the class’s opinions on pain relief. I asked two questions: where they stand in their beliefs about assessing the need for pain medication, and whether they favor pain medication or alternate therapy methods. The majority, about 67%, believe that the patient and doctor should determine the need of pain medication. The plurality of the class, about 39%, somewhat favor alternate therapy methods.

Findings- Crosstabs

I was interested in the relationship between whether the class had sought medical attention for pain relief and their history with physical pain. Three questions examined this topic: whether they had suffered from physical pain, how long they had suffered from pain, and how often the pain they experienced occurred. As shown in Table 1, there is a general tendency of those who have had more of an experience with pain to seek medical attention. Of the individuals who had not sought medical attention for pain relief, 100% had suffered from physical pain, while about 93% of those who had sought medical attention had suffered from physical pain. About 29% of individuals who sought medical attention had suffered for over six months, compared to 0% of those who had not sought medical attention. And 25% of individuals who had not sought medical attention suffered from pain daily, compared to about 57% of those who had sought medical attention. Typically, individuals who had sought medical attention had a greater history with pain.

Next, I wanted to know more specifically about the relationship between the class’s history with physical pain and whether they had sought medical attention. I had four questions about this topic: what the main source of the pain was, how severe the pain they experienced was, whether they had missed a prior commitment due to their pain, and whether they had suffered from back pain. The data from this category shows that certain characteristics about one’s pain will make them more likely to seek medical attention. About 57% of individuals who had sought medical attention had suffered from a sports injury, compared to 50% of those who had not sought medical attention. About 36% of students who had sought medical attention ranked their pain as the most severe, compared to 0% of those who had not sought medical attention. Around 86% of students who had sought medical attention had missed a prior commitment due to their pain, compared to 25% of students who had not sought medical attention. The exception to this trend is that 75% of the class that had not sought medical attention had suffered from back pain, compared to about 71% of those who had sought medical attention. It is clear that specific details of one’s history with physical pain influences whether or not they seek medical attention.

I was then interested in the effects of seeking medical attention on the class’s methods of pain relief. I had five questions that examined this: what ways they had attempted to relieve their pain, what therapy methods they had used to relieve their pain, how many times they utilized the therapy method, how successful their attempts to relieve their pain were, and how many times they visited a doctor. About 50% of those who had sought medical attention combined therapy and medication, compared to 25% of individuals who had not. About 64% of those who had sought medical attention used icing as a therapy method, compared to 25% of individuals who had not. Next, 50% of those who had sought medical attention used therapy methods four or more times, compared to 0% of those who had not. Around 21% of individuals who sought medical attention were extremely successful in their attempts to relieve their pain, compared to 0% of those who had not sought medical attention. Finally, about 21% of those who had sought medical attention visited a doctor four or more times, and logically, 0% of those who had not sought medical attention did so. Individuals who sought medical attention more frequently used relief strategies and had success with those.

Then, I wanted to know specifically about the class’s experience with pain medication and the relationship of that to whether they had sought medical attention. I had four questions on this topic: whether they had taken over the counter medicine, whether they had requested pain medicine, whether they had been prescribed pain medicine, and how significant the possible side effects are. About 36% of students who had sought medical attention had taken over the counter medicine several times, compared to 0% of students who had not sought medical attention. Around 79% of those who had sought medical attention had requested pain medicine, compared to 0% those who had not sought medical attention. Approximately 93% of individuals who sought medical attention had been prescribed pain medication, compared to 25% of individuals who had not sought medical attention. Finally, about 14% of those who had sought medical attention indicated that the possible side effects of pain medication were extremely insignificant, compared to 0% of those who had not. Individuals who sought medical attention for pain relief were more inclined to use pain medication.

Finally, I was interested in how seeking medical attention affects the opinions of the class on pain relief. There were two questions that examined this relationship: where they stand in their beliefs about assessing the need for pain medication, and whether they favor pain medication or therapy methods. About 71% of students who had sought medical attention believed that the need for medication should be determined by both the patient and the doctor, compared to to 50% of students who had not sought medical attention. And about 29% of students who had sought medical attention strongly favor pain medicine, compared to 25% of students who had not sought medical attention.

Conclusion

Physical pain is a leading medical issue, as it is something many people are forced to endure. The data I collected reflects this; the majority of the class has suffered from pain. The class’s history with pain varies, but there were important trends that existed with the individuals who had sought medical attention compared to those who had not. Individuals who had a greater history with physical pain were more likely to seek medical attention. In turn, seeking medical attention had a significant effect on the way students went about dealing with their pain, and these strategies used by those who sought medical attention brought greater success with pain relief.

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A Study and Survey on Pain and Pain Relief. (2018, October 26). GradesFixer. Retrieved December 6, 2022, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/a-study-and-survey-on-pain-and-pain-relief/
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A Study and Survey on Pain and Pain Relief. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/a-study-and-survey-on-pain-and-pain-relief/> [Accessed 6 Dec. 2022].
A Study and Survey on Pain and Pain Relief [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2018 Oct 26 [cited 2022 Dec 6]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/a-study-and-survey-on-pain-and-pain-relief/
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