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Illness and demographic correlates of chronic pain among a community-based sample of people with multiple sclerosis

Douglas, Clint, Wollin, Judy A., & Windsor, Carol A. (2008) Illness and demographic correlates of chronic pain among a community-based sample of people with multiple sclerosis. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 89(10), pp. 1923-1932.

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Abstract

Objective: To investigate the prevalence, nature, and correlates of pain among a community-based sample of people with multiple sclerosis (MS). Design: Cross-sectional survey and structured pain interview. Setting: Community. Participants: Two hundred and nineteen people with MS recruited via systematic sampling from a randomly ordered MS society membership database. Intervention: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures: Pain presence or absence, pain intensity (numerical rating scales), pain quality (McGill Pain Questionnaire), pain location(s) and extent (pain drawing), pain duration and frequency, provoking and relieving pain factors, and pain management techniques. Results: Pain was found to be common with some 67.1% of the sample reporting pain during the two weeks preceding the study. Comprehensive pain assessment revealed that a substantial subset of these individuals experience chronic pain conditions characterised by moderate-to-severe pain intensity. Among those with pain, three-quarters reported pain in 3 or more locations, with participants reporting an average of 4.0 (SD = 1.8) distinct pain sites. Women and individuals with more severe MS-related disability were significantly more likely to report both the presence of pain and greater pain intensity. In contrast, being in a married/defacto relationship and longer time since MS diagnosis were significantly associated with lower pain intensity. Conclusion: Given the high prevalence and nature of pain experienced by people with MS, health care providers need to approach pain with a similar priority given to other MS-related problems such as mobility and functional independence. Women and individuals with more severe MS-related disability appear to be at particular risk for significant pain problems and therefore these groups warrant particular attention, such that routine clinical assessment should trigger routine pain assessment.

Impact and interest:

10 citations in Scopus
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7 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 13776
Item Type: Journal Article
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Multiple sclerosis, MS, Pain, Prevalence, Correlates
DOI: 10.1016/j.apmr.2008.03.022
ISSN: 0003-9993
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NURSING (111000) > Clinical Nursing - Tertiary (Rehabilitative) (111004)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NURSING (111000)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Health Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2008 Elsevier
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 16 Jun 2008
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:48

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