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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Lutifat Kashimawo, MD (Ochsner Clinic Foundation)
Description: This is a summary of perspectives of various international experts in the field of pain research and treatment presented at the Fourth International Forum of the Pediatric Pain Conference held in Nova Scotia (2002). The book reviews the social and biological contexts of pediatric pain and how these influence expression, management, and our understanding of pediatric pain.
Purpose: Through the presentation of current evidence, the book demonstrates how external and internal environment (independent of pain transmission) influence pediatric pain expressions and responses. The book also improves on the current understanding of pediatric pain and how deficiencies in management can be improved by child healthcare providers.
Audience: The audience includes various child healthcare providers, particularly pediatric oncologists, intensivists, anesthesiologists, nurses, and psychotherapists. It also addresses people involved in establishing and implementing policies related to pediatric pain management at local, state, national, and international levels.
Features: The book reviews current concepts of neonatal (animal) models of pain and discusses pain in premature babies. The book goes on to highlight a variety of evidence demonstrating the way children experience and express painful events. The interactions between a child's biological makeup, immediate environment, thoughts, and appraisal of events as well as his/or her history of social learning shapes the pain experience. The book stresses the role of family as one of many factors that can affect a painful experience, while acknowledging the complex relationship of various other factors involved with pediatric pain. In addition, the book stresses the underuse of pain medications, particularly in pediatric patients with chronic pain (i.e., cancer patients); reasons for this inadequate management; currently available policies to alleviate these problems; and their implementation at various levels.
Assessment: This book's objective is to review the social and biological aspects that influence the expression and characteristics of pediatric pain. It cites a plethora of evidence to show the complex relationship of these factors of pain expression. Its goal is to improve our limited understanding of chronic/acute pain in pediatric patients and it meets this objective.