The Future of Pain Management in Emergency Medicine
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How have we as a profession, whose number-one goal is to decrease human suffering, made pain control such a poorly discussed issue in training? From day 1 of medical school, pain and suffering need to be discussed. No clinical area should be taught without discussion of this most common and most important symptom. Although we have shown that up to 70% of our patients have pain as a part of their presenting problem, hospitalized patients also have high rates of pain, often unrecognized. Barriers need to be identified and discussed. Alternatives to medications should be as much a part of our armamentarium as caring and compassion. The future of pain control depends on this paradigm shift.
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