Multidimensional pain assessment tools are used to assess the many ways that pain affects a person. Although unidimensional pain assessment tools are typically used to assess pain intensity, particularly when frequent measurements are needed, multidimensional pain assessment tools are used to obtain a comprehensive understanding of pain.
Many different multidimensional pain assessment tools may be used depending on the client population, the reason for the assessment, and the unit/hospital/area of care you work. For example, when treating certain populations such as pre-verbal and non-verbal clients, your assessment may focus on behavioural cues. When treating clients with chronic pain, you may focus on understanding the many ways that pain affects a person including psychologically, socially, and functionally.
The following sections explore:
- PQRSTU mnemonic.
- Brief Pain Inventory.
- Pain scales related to cognitive impairment.
- FLACC Pain Tool.
- Behavioural Pain Scale and Critical Care Pain Observation Tool.
Let’s check out these tools!