Parents' Use of Nonpharmacologic Methods to Manage Procedural Pain in Infants
To describe parents' use of nonpharmacologic methods to manage infant procedural pain in the NICU and determine the demographic factors related to such use.Design:
A cross-sectional and descriptive study design.Setting:
Level III and Level II NICUs (seven units) of four University Hospitals in Finland.Participants:
Parents (N = 178) whose infants were treated in Finnish NICUs.Methods:
Parents were asked to respond to a structured questionnaire during their infants' hospitalizations. We analyzed the data using the nonparametric Kruskal–Wallis one-way analysis of variance and Mann–Whitney U test.Results:
Most parents reported that they used physical methods, such as touching, holding, and positioning, nearly always/always (86%, 76%, and 55%, respectively). However, less commonly used strategies included recorded music (2%), breastfeeding (2%), and non-nutritive sucking with oral sucrose (6%). Many characteristics of the infants, such as their gestational ages and their conditions, were significantly related to the implementation of nonpharmacologic methods.Conclusion:
There is a clear need to extend parents' use of nonpharmacologic methods to manage their infants' procedural pain in the NICU. Because many methods were not considered as pain-relieving strategies, it is important to increase knowledge about the effectiveness of these interventions among parents and nurses.