Utility of numerical and visual analog scales for evaluating the post-operative pain in rural areas

Laxminarayana Anpuram


Background: Under normal circumstances one tries to avoid pain. If incurred, one would like to do something about it, like taking pain killers, seeking medical help or avoiding movements or positions that bring on pain or make it worse. The aim of study was to evaluate the literacy impact on the ability to indicate pain on two rating scales.

Methods: This study was a cross sectional study conducted in post-operative patients admitted in tertiary hospital in rural areas of India. This study was conducted between May 2016 to October 2016.

Results: In this study, 100 patients were enrolled. illiterate patients were 40 which was the highest and the least was graduate patients which constituted about 8%. Patients who were in upper class was the least which constituted about 6%, patients who were in middle class was the highest which was 65%. P values for age, sex and literacy in VAS scale were 0.642, 0.966 and 0.322 respectively. The P values for age, sex and literacy in NAS scale were 0.711, 0.401 and 0.870 respectively.

Conclusions: This study proved that illiterate patients in Indian rural population can easily rate their pain on these scales and thus visual analog scales and numeric analog scales were the simplest tools for assessing the pain.


Numeric analog scale, Visual anolog scale

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