Pediatric Pain Management: Professional and Pragmatic Issues

  • Jeffrey B. Gillman
  • Larry L. Mullins


The experience of pain is universal and is a part of the human condition from early in life until the moment of death (Mennie, 1974). Although the management of pain in adults has been studied and addressed by almost all medical specialties for many years, it is only within the last decade or so that similar work has been undertaken with children. It is quite evident to those who work with individuals who are experiencing pain, particularly those who work with pediatric populations, that the scientific and technical issues involved in pain assessment and management are extremely complex. The sources and mediating factors of a child’s pain experience and its exacerbation may be numerous and interrelated. They are likely to include one or more of the following: physical and/or psychological trauma; an ongoing disease process; diagnostic procedures; therapeutic or treatment procedures; psychological distress resulting from disturbed family dynamics; anxiety; depression; fear regarding the etiology, prognosis, and treatment of a medical condition; and the child’s cognitive/developmental level, previous history of pain experiences, and existing or previously developed coping skills. Although the assessment of these complex issues and the development of appropriate intervention strategies are more thoroughly discussed elsewhere in this volume, the focus of this chapter is on the professional and pragmatic issues involved in implementing a pediatric pain program.


Pain Management Interdisciplinary Team Recurrent Abdominal Pain Referral Source Pain Problem 
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© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeffrey B. Gillman
  • Larry L. Mullins

There are no affiliations available

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