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Pain and functionality following sternotomy: a prospective 12-month observational study


Veal, FC and Bereznicki, LRE and Thompson, AJ and Peterson, GM and Orlikowski, CE, Pain and functionality following sternotomy: a prospective 12-month observational study, Pain Medicine, 17, (6) pp. 1155-1162. ISSN 1526-2375 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 American Academy of Pain Medicine

DOI: doi:10.1093/pm/pnv066


Objective. To document pain levels, functionality, and analgesic use in the 12 months following a sternotomy to identify factors associated with the development of persistent post-sternotomy pain.

Design. Prospective observational study.

Settings. Royal Hobart Hospital, Australia.

Subjects. Patients undergoing a sternotomy between January and November 2013.

Methods. One hundred and ten patients were recruited and followed for 12 months, with telephone calls at 10 days, 6 weeks, 3 months, and 12 months. An initial survey was completed at the point of recruitment including patient history, depression and anxiety scales, self-rated health, and pain catastrophizing scale.

Results. he mean age of participants was 69.6 years, with the majority of participants being male (84.5%). The proportion of patients reporting pain in the early post-discharge period was high, with 30% of patients experiencing on average moderate-severe pain in the 10 days following discharge and 11% experiencing on average moderate-severe pain at 6 weeks. At 12 months, 15.5% of participants reported on average mild pain and 0.9% an average of moderate-severe pain in the preceding week at their sternotomy site. Pain of neuropathic origin was reported by 41.2% of those with on average daily pain at 12 months. Conclusion: This study highlights the need for further research to investigate whether more intensive pain management in the post-discharge period following sternotomy as well as the early identification of patients with neuropathic pain symptoms can reduce the incidence of persistent post-operative pain at 12 months.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:post-sternotomy pain, persistent post-operative pain, post-discharge pain
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Pharmacology and pharmaceutical sciences
Research Field:Clinical pharmacy and pharmacy practice
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Veal, FC (Ms Felicity Veal)
UTAS Author:Bereznicki, LRE (Professor Luke Bereznicki)
UTAS Author:Thompson, AJ (Mr Angus Thompson)
UTAS Author:Peterson, GM (Professor Gregory Peterson)
ID Code:105610
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:4
Deposited By:Pharmacy
Deposited On:2016-01-11
Last Modified:2017-11-02

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