The gold standard for measuring pain today is still what is called the “Visual Analogue Scale” or the “Numerical Rating Scales).
The system is based on a 1-10 scale on how much pain the patient is feeling. This system is completely flawed because it relies on the patient being completely honest and having the right tools to give a correct answered or ranking. This means that one of the keen factors if you get strong narcotic painkillers or just some Paracetamol is your own words as a patient.
Main focus will be acute physical pain and chronic pain in patient. Finding a way for healthcare personnel to determine what kind of actions more objectively and efficiently are necessary. By that having the focus on the health of the patient and with the healthcare personnel as the main users.
Pain is very much subjective, and some people are more equipped to handle pain and describe their pain. One of the problems is that most people start to compare their pain to others. If you for example know somebody that recently had a child. Then your pain maybe seems like nothing.
Another problem is culture, and how you have been raised to handle and show your feelings. It ́s very common for patients to both understate and overstating their pain. More problems come in when we start to think of different types of pain. Tissue pain can feel completely different than for example nerve-related pain. Even more problems can be considered when talking about physical pain vs psychological pain or social pain. The measurement we use for knowing how much pain somebody feels is solely based on the words of the patient.
With this project I want to create a complete technical package designed to be able to do pain assessment on a more objective level in a hospital environment. With a focus on the emergency department, intensive care, and related doctor visits. This is to provide a balance to today's methods that are based heavily on the patient's own words and their own ability to describe their pain.
The standard for measuring pain is outdated compared to the normal standard of technology we see in hospitals today. With this project, I provide an alternative to balance the subjective answer a hospital worker receives to the question "how are you?" or "How hurt are you?".
This is done by implementing new technology and for adding objective data into the system. With that said, I do NOT take away the patients' actual words and feelings. Just providing more information to strengthen and balance the result and data.
• Better experience for patients overall with (trust and empathy).
• Better communication between patient and hospital staff (Understanding).
• Better understanding from hospital staff. (Empathy and clarity in what need to be done).
• Better time management and workflow for hospital staff. (With clearer communication and the process of putting the right action directly can be made simpler).
• Find diseases that do not appear directly on the outside (eg fibromyalgia, pain for no apparent reason).