Describe how PRN pain relief be used to support individuals with dementia who may be in pain
One of the greatest challenges facing health care today is the provision of proper pain management in elderly patients suffering from both acute and chronic pain. [ The task of caring for suffering individuals is
magnified when those patients are inflicted with cognitive impairments. Approximately 4 ½ million Americans suffer from Alzheimer’s disease and it is
estimated that around 14 million
will have the disease
by the year 2050 if a cure is not found. With the possible exception of depression, the mental disorder
constituting the greatest health problem in the older age group is organic brain syndrome of varying
etiology and severity. Elders with dementia illness receive fewer pain medications and interventions
aimed at relieving discomfort than those elders without brain syndromes. The purpose of this paper is to
provide information regarding the enormity of the problem, discuss assessment tools available for use when
identifying the pain in this group, list usual and unusual manifestations of pain in patients with dementia,
identify the most common differential diagnosis
causing pain symptoms and suggest treatment
methodologies for treating pain in this special population.
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