The Iconic Pain Assessment Tool (IPAT) is a novel web-based instrument for the self-report of pain quality, intensity and location in the form of a permanent diary. Originally designed for people with central poststroke pain, the tool is being adapted for a larger, more diverse patient population. The present study aimed to collect evaluative feedback on the IPAT from a heterogeneous sample of individuals with chronic pain. The specific study aims were to evaluate participant comfort with the tool including enjoyment, ease of use and comfort with the electronic medium; to assess perceived value of the tool for communicating pain quality, intensity and location; to gauge participant intent to share their pain diaries with others and use the tool on a regular basis to track their pain over time; to assess the perceived descriptiveness of current IPAT icons and the numerical rating scale; and to identify strengths and weaknesses of the tool to refine the existing prototype.
Written and verbal feedback from individuals with a variety of chronic pain conditions (n=23) were collected in the context of these objectives. Overall, the IPAT was positively endorsed by this heterogeneous sample of people in pain. The authors concluded that the IPAT is a user-friendly instrument that has the potential to help people express, document and share their personal experience with chronic pain.