Predictors of Patient Satisfaction With Pain Management and Improvement 3 Months After Burn Injury


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Abstract

Very little is known about what influences patient satisfaction with burn pain management. The aim of this prospective study was to examine predictors of patient satisfaction with pain management following burn injury. Methods: Participants were 97 adult burn patients admitted to Royal Perth Hospital, Western Australia between June 2007 and February 2009. Key patient satisfaction domains were: pain treatment in hospital, pain medication provided, and improvement since hospitalisation. Acute pain medication use, pain severity, psychological symptoms, and patient expectations were assessed as potential predictors of patient satisfaction. Results: Patients reported moderate to high levels of satisfaction across all domains. Whether treatment matched patients’ expectations was a significant predictor of satisfaction with pain treatment, pain medication and improvement (p < .001, p < .001, p < .05 respectively). Current pain at follow-up was a significant predictor of satisfaction with pain treatment and improvement (p < .01, p < .001 respectively). Acute pain medication use, depressive symptoms and reductions in average pain at three months were not significant independent predictors of patient satisfaction with pain management and improvement in this sample (p > .35). Yet, severity of posttrauma symptoms at three months was a significant predictor of satisfaction with pain medication and was moderately and positively associated with satisfaction with pain treatment (p < .05, p = .07, respectively). Discussion: These findings suggest that acute medication use and reductions in perceived pain symptoms are less closely related to patient satisfaction compared with treatment expectations, current pain and posttrauma symptoms. Collectively, these findings indicate a need to proactively address treatment expectations about pain management, and manage current pain and psychological distress following burn injury in order to improve patient satisfaction with care received.

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