Thursday, March 12, 2009

Pain Scale

There is, apparently, no objective pain scale to be found on the Internet. Instead there are many angry nurse blogs complaining that there is no objective pain scale. And that patients who are clearly not in agony still say "10" when asked what their pain is on a scale from 1-10.

In order to avoid confusion on this issue, below is the pain scale I will be using throughout this blog.* Maybe I will post it by my bed in the hospital so the nurses tending to me can also benefit from its clarity.

0 - No pain.

1 - Conscious of occasional discomfort in the affected area, but discomfort is tolerable and does not inhibit daily activity.

2 - More steady discomfort in the affected area, however still tolerable and not inhibiting of daily activity.

3 - Some pinching, throbbing or sharper spikes of pain in the affected area, perhaps causing a brief wince. Discomfort still tolerable but beginning to make you think about favoring that area while moving/bearing weight on it.

4 - Overall higher level of pain. Activity of the affected area limited in an effort to lessen pain. Mildly distracting but non-strenuous daily activities like talking and reading are still possible.

5 - Pain level has become distracting, causing irritability when talking, inability to concentrate on reading or other activities. You are definitely not moving/bearing weight on the affected area. Mild sporadic profanity begins.

6 - Now you are getting pretty pissed off about this pain. Where is the f'ing nurse?!

7 - Tears, gasps and desperate mewing in between sobs. Mommy evoked.

8 - Wailing and white knuckles. God(s) evoked.

9 - You begin to think you have chosen the incorrect hospital for appropriate pain management. Lawyer evoked.

10 - Someone has lit your body on fire and is now attempting to put it out by beating you with track shoes. (Flip-flopper.)

*I reserve the right to alter or amend this pain scale if it turns out that writing it while not in pain, pre-surgery, on a Friday afternoon after lunch, has led me to grossly underestimate and/or mischaracterize any or all of the aforementioned pain levels.

No comments:

Post a Comment