Academic Master


Healthcare and Nursing, Pain

Recently, there have been debates and discussions among scholars and experts about whether a patient or a person may be allowed to purchase pain medication comprising codeine, and or may have it over the counter (OTC). Since pain is most likely the common symptom, that we treat as health care providers. However, it is important for us to have excellent knowledge and understanding of the best options existing to offer optimum pain management. Indeed, at a certain point in life, almost everyone experiences a certain type of pain (Phillips, 2000). Pain brings about unpleasant sensory as well as emotional experience emanating from the actual or rather potential damage to the tissue. From the clinical perceptive, pain is whatsoever an individual says they are experiencing whenever they claim it occurs. Acute pain lasts for many hours or days, and it is linked to damage to the tissues. As a matter of fact, acute pain act as a warning signifying that something is not right. Therefore, this paper argued that patients should be allowed to buy pain medication over the counter. However, some people argue that no one should buy medication without a prescription from a physician. Recognition of the extensive inadequacy of the pain management has encouraged individuals to buy pain medication by themselves over the counters. To discourage patients from purchasing pain medication over the counters then health care professionals need to have excellent pain assessment and management.

Firstly, in spite of the existence of evidence-based procedures, chronic pain is not sufficiently addressed by physicians. Studies reveal that there is an inability of physicians to use the research information and provide adequate pain management. Poor assessment of pain has caused a lot of trouble and hopelessness among the patients (Phillips, 2000). Even worse, some health care providers have poor pain evaluations and lack knowledge on how to address the pain.

Notably, patients’ assessment of their pain experiences is the basis to optimal pain medication. Nonetheless, the quality, as well as the utility of any tool of assessment, is as good as the ability of the clinician to meticulously focus on the patient (Stang, Hartling, Fera, Johnson & Ali, 2014). The implication is that the clinician should be listening empathically, believe as well as and legitimize the pain experience of the patient, and properly understand the experience of the patient. A clinician’s empathic understanding pain experience of the patient as well as accompanying signs proves that there is frank attention to the patient as an individual. Therefore, this may influence optimistic pain management results. After the evaluation, effective pain management relies on clinicians’ solemn efforts in order to ensure that the patients have an access to quality pain relief, which can be safely offered

Ineffectively managed pain may lead to hostile physical as well as psychological patient experience for patients as well as their families. Unceasing, unrelieved pain triggers s the pituitary-adrenal axis that may conquer the immune system, and outcome in postsurgical contamination as well as poor wound healing. Considerate activation may have adverse effects on the vascular, and renal systems, disposing patients of painful events including cardiac ischemia. What is more, unrelieved pain reduces the mobility of the patient, leading to complications like deep vein thrombosis (Phillips, 2000). Postsurgical complications associated with inadequate pain management advisedly affect the welfare of the patient as well as the hospital performance as the extended days of stay as well as readmissions raise the cost of health care provision.

Furthermore, constant unrelieved pain affects the patient’s psychological state and that of his/her family members. The known psychological reactions to pain involve anxiety and depression. Therefore, the inability to avoid pain may bring about a sense of helplessness and hopelessness that may dispose the patient to various chronic depression. In this case, patients who have met inadequate pain management can be reluctant to pursue care for other health issues (Horgas, 2017). The implication is that they are discouraged by the inadequacy and incompetency of the health care providers to offer effective pain assessment and management. Moreover, poor pain management may place health care providers at risk for lawful action. Physicians are expected to promptly address and manage patients’ pain.

Patients suffering from acute pain in several ways. First, it takes away the lives of patients. Secondly, patients may be depressed or rather anxious and may opt to end their lives. What is more, patients may sometimes become unable to perform many duties they would otherwise have performed without pain. Some patients living in pain may not have the ability to work and therefore may not maintain their employment. Notably, what is often ignored is the fact that pain has bodily harmful effects. It is physiologically dangerous to have pain. The reason is the effects of pain particularly on the endocrine as well as the metabolic system, and gastrointestinal system among other systems show how unrelieved pain may be unsafe.

It should be understood that pain causes stress in the sense that the endocrine system responds by releasing huge amounts of hormones that eventually lead to the destruction of carbohydrates, fat, and protein as well as poor glucose use. These responses combined with provocative processes may lead to weight loss (Horgas, 2017). Overall, unrelieved pain extends the stress response and adversely distresses the recovery of the patient. The cardiovascular system reacts to stress caused by pain by triggering the sympathetic nervous system that in turn produces several unwanted effects. Thus, aggressive pain management is required to lessen these effects, and stop thromboembolic complications.

Unrelieved and poorly managed pain may be harmful to patients who suffer from metastatic cancers. Hence, stress and pain may suppress the functions of the immune. The management of perioperative pain is possibly a vital factor in avoiding surgery-induced reduction in resistance against metastasis. Besides, unrelieved chronic pain may lead to acute pain. Thus, the pain experienced now may become the pain chronic pain that would be experienced at a later date.

Notably, proper assessment of pain remains to be an essential step in providing better pain management. Studies reveal that a lack of proper pain assessment is a problematic barrier to attaining effective pain control (Horgas, 2017). To adequately meet the needs of patients, there is a need to reassess pain after every single intervention to assess the effect as well as determine whether the alteration is needed. To comprehensively evaluate pain, health care providers should identify the patient’s history of illness, beliefs, attitudes, as well as knowledge of pain.

In summary, pain causes a lot of distress to the patient. First, it leads to extended stress and even death. Therefore, health care providers should adequately assess the patient’s pain and manage it effectively. Some of the patients have experienced poor pain management by the health care provider who is supposed to sufficiently control the pain. Also, studies have indicated that patients have opted to buy pain medication over the counter because the nurses who are supposed to manage their pain have a poor evaluations of pain. Pain affects both the physical and emotional health of the patient. Thus, successfully controlling the pain patients experience is a vital constituent of their recovery. It is essential to assess pain and how it can be best managed to avoid its adverse consequences in adults and how this can best be done. Overall, the causes and signs of chronic as well as acute pain should be detailed, together with the assessment tools, which can be applied.


Horgas, A. L. (2017). Pain Management in Older Adults. Nursing Clinics52(4), e1-e7. vements in patients’ outcomes and satisfaction. Critical care nurse35(3), 33-41.

Phillips, D. M. (2000). JCAHO pain management standards are unveiled. Jama284(4), 428-429.

Stang, A. S., Hartling, L., Fera, C., Johnson, D., & Ali, S. (2014). Quality indicators for the assessment and management of pain in the emergency department: a systematic review. Pain Research and Management19(6), e179-e190.



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