Current Challenges in Pain Management in Hip Fracture Patients

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Summary:The high incidence of hip fracture, together with considerable associated morbidity, mortality, and cost of care, makes this injury a major clinical challenge. Of particular importance is the pain associated with hip fracture, which can have potentially severe consequences and may lead to delayed recovery. The prevailing opioid-dependent model of analgesia, however, presents multiple drawbacks and risks that can compromise outcomes in the hip fracture population. The pain management process has essential preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative components, yet data on the comparative effectiveness of different pain management interventions in patients undergoing surgery for hip fracture are not clear cut. A Cochrane database review that included 83 different pain management studies indicated that there are not enough well-designed studies to show unequivocally which pain management approaches work well after hip fracture surgery. Yet a growing body of data on certain interventions, such as nerve blocks and multimodal analgesia, supports consideration of these options.

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