International Nursing Conference
December 5-7, 2016 | Dubai, UAE
Pain management in neonates
Emirates Home Nursing LLC, UAE
For many years, pain management in neonates was not included in nursing procedures and it was not taken in consideration by health professionals across neonatal units, even more, it was considered that neonates couldnʼt feel pain.
The evolution and progress of Neonatal Nursing led to the investigation of the impact and importance of pain management in neonates. Research has been shown that both preterm and term infants express the same physiologic responses to pain and noxious stimuli as adults do, reinforcing the importance of measures to attenuate the pain in neonates. Exposure to multiple painful procedures may increase the vulnerability of preterm infants to gross neurologic damage, and even affect the development of attitudes, fears, anxiety, conflicts, wishes, expectations and patterns of interactions with others.
Moreover, the use of pain management measures facilitates stability and self-regulation before and during an invasive painful procedure by decreasing physiologic instability, hormonal and metabolic stress and it also contributes to reduce parentsʼ stress and anxieties.
In order to measure/assess neonates pain there are several scales in place in different healthcare facilities, examples of available scales are Neonatal Pain Scale (NIPS); Premature Infant Pain Profile (PIPP); Neonatal Postoperative Pain Assessment Score (CRIES).
At the moment we know the importance of pain management in neonates and the impact that consequent poor management has in their adults lives, however this awareness is not consistent amongst professionals. Yet, a cooperative effort among health care providers and the parents in the form of pain management teams and well-established pain protocols prevents unnecessary suffering of both neonates and their families.
Keywords: Neonatal Nursing, Pain Management; Neonate; Healthcare Professionals; Pain Assessment Scales
Ana Neto earned her Nursing Degree in her home country of Portugal, she went on to specialise in Neonatal care in London, UK. With 6 yearsʼ experience between the UK and UAE, Ana is an expert in Neonatal Nursing and shares this knowledge in educational workshops and lectures throughout the UAE. Now the Assistant Clinical Manager at Emirates Home Nursing, Ana is also a Certified Mentor and Preceptor and has worked with the renown Inga Warren, delivering workshops in London.