Familiarizing physicians with analgesics?


Question from Marilyn: As an Oncology/Palliative Nurse, how can we assist the physicians who are unfamiliar with good pain management so that patients receive the type of analgesics they may require?
Answers - Michelle Rhiner The most important thing is that they have to keep informed. The nurses have to keep abreast of the latest literature on pain management and the adjuvant medications that would be used, perhaps off-label, for different pain syndromes.

I think the most effective way of changing one's behavior is by example. And, certainly, bringing to your physician-colleague's attention the patient's level of pain, with possible suggestions to make a difference, can oftentimes be helpful.

The American Pain Society has a wonderful booklet that can be used. It's a brand-new edition called "Principles of Analgesic Use in the Treatment of Acute Pain and Cancer Pain". Oftentimes, physicians will recognize that organization as an authority and will take that booklet's recommendations.
Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. Patients are often more willing to talk with their nurses than with their doctors about how they're really feeling, and many physicians are aware of that.

On Wednesday, January 21, 2004, our Ask-the-Expert Online Conference was called Pain Management: Getting the Relief YOU Need. Neal Slatkin, M.D., Michelle Rhiner, N.P. and moderator Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. answered your questions about the best ways to deal with the physical pain and discomforts associated with breast cancer and breast cancer treatment.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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