Reducing the effects of acute pain in critically ill patients

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Unrelieved pain in critically ill patients can increase mortality, morbidity, length of stay, and use of resources. This article reviews the physiologic basis of acute pain and the pathophysiologic sequelae that may ensue when critically ill patients experience acute pain. The author recommends strategies critical care nurses and advanced practice nurses can use to provide effective analgesia and potentially improve patient outcomes.

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