Healthy Aging pp 305-312 | Cite as

Pain and Healthy Aging

  • Fabio Guerriero
  • M. Carrington Reid


Healthy aging has been defined as the “development and maintenance of optimal mental, social and physical well-being and function in older adults” [1]. Preventing and managing pain in later life is critical to help individuals achieve healthy aging, maintain independence, and preserve autonomy. This chapter reviews the epidemiology of pain in older adults, summarizes differences in pain perception as a function of age, and describes recent evidence regarding the impact of pain on function and quality of life in older adults. We also provide recommendations for practical methods to assess pain in older adults, summarize key primary prevention efforts that clinicians can implement to reduce the occurrence of new cases of persistent pain, and present management strategies that are appropriate for use in the era of the opioid epidemic.


Persistent pain Disability Older adults Pain assessment Pain management 



Dr. Reid is supported by grants from the National Institute on Aging (P30AG022845, K24AGO53462) and by the Howard and Phyllis Schwartz Philanthropic Fund.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fabio Guerriero
    • 1
  • M. Carrington Reid
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Internal Medicine and Medical TherapyUniversity of PaviaPaviaItaly
  2. 2.Department of MedicineWeill Cornell MedicineNew YorkUSA

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