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This chapter deals with important considerations with regard to pre-procedure, peri-procedure, and post-procedure patient assessment and pain management strategies. Practitioner training and experience in administering sedation is an important consideration. For most patients, pain assessments and establishment of pain treatment goals can be performed by a non-anesthesiologist. Appropriate assessment of pain increases caregiver awareness of pain status, allows for the delivery of appropriate interventions, provides for feedback, decreases both patient and caregiver frustration, and improves patient satisfaction. The chapter outlines the most common pain assessment tools in current use in general and special populations. In the general population, which includes mature children, adults, and the cognitively intact elderly, the use of self-report scales has been validated as the most reliable indicator of pain. With appropriate vigilance, planning, and continuous communication between team members, many of the barriers involved in planning and executing an effective pain management strategy can be overcome.
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