The effect of cold application on pain due to chest tube removal

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Abstract

Aim and objectives.

The aim of the research is to determine the effect of cold application on the pain owing to chest tube removal for patients with single pleural chest tube.

Background.

Removal of chest tubes causes patients to feel pain and interventions used for reducing the pain owing to the removal of chest tubes are not sufficient.

Design.

Controlled clinical trial with repeated measures.

Methods.

This study was conducted with 140 patients, of whom 70 patients were in the experimental group and 70 patients were in the control group, in a thoracic hospital in Turkey. Data were collected using a data collection form consisting of patients’ demographic and health history and Visual Analogue Scale. Cold was applied to patients in the experimental group prior to chest tube removal. In the experimental group, skin temperature and pain intensity was measured for each patient at four time points. In the control group, pain intensity was evaluated for each patient at three time points. Data were evaluated using Chi-square and Repeated Measurements two-way anova tests.

Results.

The Visual Analogue Scale score was measured immediately after the chest tube removal in the experimental group was 3·85, compared with 5·60 in the control group. There were significant differences on pain with cold application between the two groups prior and after the intervention. Age, gender, the number of days the chest tube was inserted and the chest tube insertion indication had no effect on the pain owing to chest tube removal.

Conclusion.

Cold application is effective in reducing the pain owing to chest tube removal.

Relevance to clinical practice.

Cold application was recommended prior to chest tube removal to reduce the pain owing to removal of chest tube.

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