Assessing and addressing the problem of pain and distress during wound care procedures in paediatric patients with burns
Objective While the prevalence of burns in children is highest in low and middle-income countries, most research on burn-related pain intensity and distress is carried out in high-income countries. In this study we assessed pain intensity and distress in paediatric patients with burns undergoing wound care procedures without distraction and parental presence in a South-African children's hospital and sought to identify predictors for the outcomes. Methods This observational study, carried out as part of a randomized controlled trial, took place at a burns unit in Cape Town, South Africa and included patients between the ages of 0 and 13 years undergoing their first or second wound care procedure. We measured pain intensity and distress using the COMFORT Behavioural scale (COMFORT-B) across four distinct phases of wound care procedures: removal of bandage; washing the wound; administering wound care; putting on new dressings. COMFORT-B scores ≥21 indicate severe pain intensity and distress. Results 124 patients were included, median age 21.2 months (IQR 14.9–39.5 months), 90% suffered scalds, and median total body surface 8% (IQR 5–14%). Assessment scores for the majority of patients were indicative of severe pain intensity and distress during wound care procedures. Median COMFORT-B scores across the four phases were 24, 25, 25 and 22 respectively. Across the four phases respectively 76%; 89%; 81% and 62% of the patients were indicated with severe pain intensity and distress. Age was a predictor for pain intensity and distress as younger children were assigned higher scores than older children (Unstandardized B −.052; 95% CI −.071 to −.032 p < 0.001). Conclusions In this study children received wound care procedures without distraction or parental presence and were assessed to have high pain intensity and distress. There is a correlation between age and COMFORT-B scores: younger children show higher distress, indicating a great need for better pain and distress control during wound care procedures. It is difficult to identify whether pain or distress is the specific primary cause for the high COMFORT-B scores.
|Keywords||Burn, Children, COMFORT-B, Distress, Pain, Wound care procedures|
|Persistent URL||dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.burns.2017.07.004, hdl.handle.net/1765/110838|
van der Heijden, M.J.E, de Jong, A.E.E, Rode, H, Martinez, R. (Roux), & van Dijk, M. (2018). Assessing and addressing the problem of pain and distress during wound care procedures in paediatric patients with burns. Burns, 44(1), 175–182. doi:10.1016/j.burns.2017.07.004