The effect of pain on health-related quality of life in the immediate postoperative period

Christopher L. Wu, Mohammad Naqibuddin, Andrew J. Rowlingson, Steven A. Lietman, Roland M. Jermyn, Lee A. Fleisher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The hypothesis of this study was to determine if the severity of postoperative pain would affect patients' health-related quality of life (HRQL) in the immediate postoperative period (within 2 wk of surgery). We designed this study as a prospective, nonrandomized observational trial in a tertiary academic care center. Patients undergoing elective total hip or knee replacement surgery were eligible. Patients received a standardized intraoperative general or epidural anesthetic followed by IV patient-controlled analgesia or patient-controlled epidural analgesia. Short Form (SF)-12, visual analog scores for pain at rest and pain with activity, nausea, and itching were assessed on postoperative days 1-5, 7, and 14. The severity of pain correlated with a decrease in both the physical and mental component of the SF-12. The severity of nausea correlated with a decrease in the mental but not physical component of the SF-12. The severity of itching did not correlate with a change in the SF-12. Our findings suggest that an increase in postoperative pain will decrease a patient's quality of life in the immediate postoperative period; however, several methodologic issues exist when assessing HRQL in the immediate postoperative period.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1078-1085
Number of pages8
JournalAnesthesia and analgesia
Volume97
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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