Pain Relief In Palliative Care

Pain Relief In Palliative Care


Pain is one of the commonest and the most torturing symptom among many other symptoms seen in chronic diseases requiring palliative care. Pain is an unpleasant feeling felt by the body. Its agonizing nature is well shown by this phrase, (“We all must die; but if I can save him from days of torture, that I feel is my great privilege, as pain is more terrible Lord, than death itself”). Pain is defined as an unpleasant sensory or emotional experience caused by actual or potential tissue damage or described in terms of such damage (IASP-International Association for the Study of Pain.)

Effective Pain management in an integral part of modern palliative care. Pain relief not only minimizes suffering of the patient but also will reduce morbidity & will facilitate rapid recovery & early discharge from the hospital. Pain management has a humanitarian role and there are additional medical & economic benefits for rapid recovery.

A number of factors contribute to effective pain management including a well structured palliative care team, pain relief guidelines/protocols, use of balanced analgesia, patient education, regular staff training ,regular assessment of pain using pain assessment tools etc.

The goals of effective pain management are:

(i) to improve quality of life
(ii) to reduce morbidity
(iii) to facilitate rapid recovery & return to full function
(iv) to allow early discharge from the hospital

 Dr. Rohini Ranwala
 Consultant Anaesthetist
 Faculty of Medical Sciences