School of Nursing

Enhanced Pain Management

Enhanced Pain Management

Unmanaged pain is a common issue that many cancer patients deal with. The lack of emphasis on pain management in the undergraduate nursing curriculum is one aspect of this issue. In this study, 41 nursing students at the undergraduate level were asked about their attitudes and knowledge of pain treatment. A demographic data form, the Nurses’ Attitude Survey, and the Pain Management Concepts Assessment Tool were all voluntary completions by students. A mean score of 19.4 out of a possible 31 was reached on the knowledge test, but a mean score of 17.0 was achieved on the Nurses’ Attitude Survey. Between knowledge and attitudes, there was shown to be a weak to moderate link.

Despite having positive attitudes toward pain treatment, many students lacked the fundamental understanding needed to manage pain effectively. Despite the sample’s modest size and lack of demographic diversity, it contained enough responses to produce statistically significant data. These results point to the need for developing specific teaching methods for pain management to undergraduate nursing students in order to enhance patient outcomes.

Unmanaged pain has been noted as a significant impediment to the entire treatment of an oncology patient. In fact, the majority of patients in this cohort will receive poor treatment, and more than 70% of them will endure persistent cancer-related pain at some point in the course of their illness. Cancer pain, which can be brought on by radiation therapy and chemotherapy as well as tissue damage brought on by tumor burden, can drastically reduce the quality of life for both patients and their carers (American Cancer Society, 2009). In order to promote better evaluation methods and therapies, recommendations for pain management in cancer have been created (American Society of Clinical Oncology, 2007).

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All aspects of psychophysiologic functioning, including sustaining interpersonal connections, engaging in daily activities, and working effectively, are susceptible to being impacted by pain. Financially speaking, it is projected that chronic pain uses up $90 billion in resources. This may be the result of missed work, an illness, or decreased production (Porter & Keefe, 2011). The total quality of life of patients is impacted by pain, which has a number of psychological symptoms such as depression, mood, and anxiety problems (Turks, 2006; Porter & Keefe, 2011)

Few research have been undertaken over the past 20 years, despite the fact that previous studies have shown that the undergraduate nursing curriculum places little emphasis on pain management. The purpose of this study was to investigate nursing students’ current attitudes and knowledge regarding pain management as they near the end of their academic careers and get ready to work in clinical settings.


We surveyed a convenience sample of undergraduate students pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) at a major research university in the Southeast of the United States for this descriptive, cross-sectional study. To be eligible for the study, students had to be in their last year of the program and had to have completed the pharmacology and pathophysiology courses in which the majority of pain management information is presented. Using the use of power analytical methods, the sample size was assessed. In order to detect statistical significance, a sample size of 30 was found to be sufficient, with a power of 0.80 and a set 0.05 for a Pearson correlation.


The Nurses’ Attitude Survey (NAS), the Pain Management Principles Assessment Test (PMPAT), and a demographic data questionnaire were the tools employed in this study.

Survey of Nursing Attitudes

The NAS, developed by McMillan and colleagues in 2000, consists of 25 items and measures attitudes toward pain management using a four-point Likert-type scale. The instrument’s responses varied from strongly disagree to strongly agree, and each item’s raw scores ranged from 1 to 4. The respondents’ sentiments were more positive the higher the score. Cronbach’s alpha was used to determine internal consistency dependability (r = 0.70). After it was pre- and posttested on nursing students, validity was established (with a significant difference of t = 6.88, p .01; McMillan et al., 2000).

Appraisal of Pain Management Concepts

The PMPAT consists of 31 multiple-choice questions, each with four possible answers. The purpose of the questionnaire was to gauge your understanding about pain management. The survey’s scores ranged from 0 to 31, or 0% to 100%, with higher numbers signifying more correctly answered questions. The tool’s design was based on a framework from earlier research investigations attesting to the validity of its content. From pre- to post-test, validity was determined to be highly significant (t = 6.76, p .01). Moreover, reliability was shown to be highly significant (r = 0.84, p =.00; McMillan et al., 2000).

Connection between Attitudes and Knowledge
Students who often scored highly on the knowledge test also scored highly on the attitude test. Similar items on the knowledge survey and attitude questionnaire appear to differ somewhat, though. On the knowledge quiz, a lot of students correctly responded that more pain medication should be given on an as-needed schedule before discomfort returns. Students, however, overwhelmingly concurred on the attitude survey that patients should feel pain before getting the next dose of painkillers. These differences may suggest that although attitudes influence how pain is managed, the majority of students still lack the rudimentary understanding and justification for effective pain management techniques.

The topic of addiction presented difficulties for students as well. Only a small portion of students knew that people with cancer are unlikely to develop an addiction to painkillers, despite the fact that the majority could correctly describe tolerance . Students were also unaware that cancer patients who received 24/7 opioids for pain had much lower chances of developing an addiction. As a result, we can see that knowledge and attitude ratings on the topic of addiction appear to be unconnected.

celsus adah

Hey! am apostle celsus Adah am a blogger, i have passion for education my favorite subject is computer science because i see computer as the science an oracle of all learning. Because of the passion for technology after my SSCE which i was register on scholarship by sen. prof. Ben Ayade in 2014, i further to a level of where i got my diploma in cornerstone computer institute where i was sponsored under scholarship by a philanthropist chief Ukandi Emmanuel Inakefe. After which i further to be a certified graphics designer and web developer in s-techmax computer institute obudu. I love education so i blog about education in an advance level because education is power and the backbone of every nation to acquire a standard level of learning .

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