Research Publication Title

Best Practice for Neonatal Pain Management

Major

Nursing

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Monica Ketchie

Keywords

Neonate, Pain, Interventions, Pharmacological, Non-Pharmacological, Best Practice, Quantitative, Nursing

Abstract

The smallest human-beings have the least ability to speak up. As an adult, one can verbalize pain and take action. For our newborn population, they are reliant on caregivers to recognize their pain cues and appropriately care for them. Pain cues of newborns include but are not limited to increased heart rate, increased crying, and increased rate of respirations. The purpose of this literature review is to determine what signs indicate a neonate is experiencing pain and display effective pain management whether it is via a pharmacological route, nonpharmacological route, or both/neither. By using the databases CINHAL, PubMed, and MEDLINE, the student researchers located and reviewed relevant information for the purposes of this evidence based project. The literature supported primarily non-pharmacological intervention is better than no intervention at all in pain management of a newborn. The most common effective interventions in decreasing neonatal pain is non-nutritive sucking, swaddling, and administration of oral glucose solutions. This is important because untreated pain can lead to devastating chronic effects in the newborn such as anxiety disorders, depression, and inattention. For future nursing care, the research supports that nurses be more in sync with cues of pain in newborns, and have a deeper understanding of pain and comfort in newborns is needed to improve pain management in this population. To better serve neonates who are experiencing pain, it is important that we understand and implement the research identified above to provide safe and effective care.

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Best Practice for Neonatal Pain Management

The smallest human-beings have the least ability to speak up. As an adult, one can verbalize pain and take action. For our newborn population, they are reliant on caregivers to recognize their pain cues and appropriately care for them. Pain cues of newborns include but are not limited to increased heart rate, increased crying, and increased rate of respirations. The purpose of this literature review is to determine what signs indicate a neonate is experiencing pain and display effective pain management whether it is via a pharmacological route, nonpharmacological route, or both/neither. By using the databases CINHAL, PubMed, and MEDLINE, the student researchers located and reviewed relevant information for the purposes of this evidence based project. The literature supported primarily non-pharmacological intervention is better than no intervention at all in pain management of a newborn. The most common effective interventions in decreasing neonatal pain is non-nutritive sucking, swaddling, and administration of oral glucose solutions. This is important because untreated pain can lead to devastating chronic effects in the newborn such as anxiety disorders, depression, and inattention. For future nursing care, the research supports that nurses be more in sync with cues of pain in newborns, and have a deeper understanding of pain and comfort in newborns is needed to improve pain management in this population. To better serve neonates who are experiencing pain, it is important that we understand and implement the research identified above to provide safe and effective care.