Factors influencing the control of post-operative pain in older people

Donna Brown, Brendan McCormack, Helen McGarvey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The purpose of this review is to discuss how healthcare professionals, and particularly nursing practice, impact upon pain management with older people (65 years and over), following surgery. The review commences with an introduction presenting why this is an important area to consider. Current available literature and findings from an ethnographic study which was designed to examine peri-operative pain-management practices with older people will then be discussed to highlight the key issues of pain assessment and management. Three overarching themes; (1) pain assessment (2) knowledge/strategies to cope with pain and (3) organization of care (culture and context), will guide the discussion. It is suggested that comprehensive pain assessment, proficient communication and multidisciplinary working, are essential to improve pain-management practices. The paper demonstrates some of the multiple and complex factors that affect the older person's pain experience and identifies possible developmental work in this field.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-156
Number of pages7
JournalReviews of Clinical Gerontology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 4 May 2005


  • pain
  • older people


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