A Systematic Integrative Review of Infant Pain Assessment Tools

Lenora J. Duhn, RN, MSc; Jennifer M. Medves, RN, PhD

Disclosures

Adv Neonatal Care. 2004;4(3) 

In This Article

Conclusions

None of the existing instruments have fulfilled all criteria for an ideal measure.[18] Given the plethora of tools, it is easy to appreciate the difficulty in creating a tool that meets all needs. Neonatal pain assessment, however, is imperative. Further evaluation of reliability, validity, clinical utility, and feasibility of existing tools must occur to enhance our ability to accurately assess infant pain. In addition, it must be recognized that use of a pain tool is but one factor; the individual infant's overall condition and response must be considered in clinical decisions regarding pain and pain management at the bedside. Finally, different pain assessment tools may work in different circumstances for different reasons, and practitioners must not feel obligated to limit themselves to certain tools, but instead individualize as necessary depending on clinical circumstances.

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