Pain Research and Management

Pain Research and Management / 2010 / Article

Original Article | Open Access

Volume 15 |Article ID 528092 |

Patti Kastanias, Sue Gowans, Paul S Tumber, Kianda Snaith, Sandra Robinson, "Patient-Controlled Oral Analgesia for Postoperative Pain Management Following Total Knee Replacement", Pain Research and Management, vol. 15, Article ID 528092, 6 pages, 2010.

Patient-Controlled Oral Analgesia for Postoperative Pain Management Following Total Knee Replacement


PURPOSE: To investigate whether patient-controlled oral analgesia (PCOA) used by individuals receiving a total knee replacement could reduce pain, increase patient satisfaction, reduce opioid use and/or reduce opioid side effects when compared with traditional nurse (RN)-administered oral analgesia.METHODS: Patients who underwent an elective total knee replacement at a quaternary care centre (Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto, Ontario) were randomly assigned to either PCOA or RN-administered short-acting oral opioids on postoperative day 2. Subjects in the RN group called the RN to receive their prescribed short-acting opioid. Subjects in the PCOA group kept a single dose of their prescribed oral opioid at their bedside and took this dose when they felt they needed it, to a maximum of one dose every 2 h. Study outcomes, collected on postoperative day 2, included pain (measured by the Brief Pain Inventory – Short Form), patient satisfaction (measured by the Pain Outcome Questionnaire Satisfaction sub-scale – component II), opioid use (oral morphine equivalents), opioid side effects (nausea, pruritis and/or constipation) and knee measures (maximum passive knee flexion and pain at maximum passive knee flexion, performed on the operative knee).RESULTS: Study outcomes were analyzed twice. First, for a subset of 73 subjects who remained in their randomly assigned group (PCOA group, n=36; RN group, n=37), randomized analyses were performed. Second, for the larger sample of 88 subjects who were categorized by their actual method of receiving oral opioids (PCOA group, n=41; RN group, n=47), as-treated analyses were performed. There were no differences in study outcomes between the PCOA and RN groups in either analysis.CONCLUSION: PCOA was not superior to RN administration on study outcomes. However, PCOA did not increase opioid use or pain. PCOA remains an important element in the patient-centred care facility.

Copyright © 2010 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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