Considerations for Better Management of Postoperative Pain in Light of Chronic Postoperative Pain: A Narrative Review

Gómez M, Izquierdo C E, Mayoral Rojals V, Pergolizzi J jr, Plancarte Sanchez R, Paladini A, Varrassi G.
Considerations for Better Management of Postoperative Pain in Light of Chronic Postoperative Pain: A Narrative Review.
Cureus (April 02, 2022) 14(4): e23763. doi:10.7759/cureus.23763

 

Abstract

Chronic postoperative pain (CPOP) is prevalent, with particularly high rates in breast surgery, thoracotomy, and amputation. As the world emerges from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) lockdowns, it is expected that there will be an increase in surgical procedures, elevating the importance of preventing CPOP in the coming years. Risk factors are emerging to better stratify patients at high risk for CPOP. Perioperative analgesia plays an important role in managing acute postoperative pain and in some cases may limit its transition to CPOP. Acute postoperative pain is adaptive, normal, expected, and has a well-defined trajectory, while CPOP is maladaptive and, as a form of chronic pain, is challenging to treat. Good analgesia, early ambulation, and rehabilitation efforts may be helpful in preventing CPOP following certain surgeries. Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) protocols present guidance to help promote recovery and prevent CPOP.

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