Perceived Discomfort, Pain and Nonpain Symptoms in a Postanesthesia Care Unit: An Observational Study.

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Journal Article
J Perianesth Nurs, 2019, 34, (5), pp. 1032-1039
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PURPOSE: To assess patient-perceived discomfort in a postanesthesia care unit (PACU) and to explore the contributing symptoms and related characteristics. DESIGN: Cross-sectional observation was used in this study. METHODS: Postgeneral anesthesia patients in a PACU were asked to report their overall discomfort level on a 0 to 10 scale and to report and rank the symptoms they were suffering. All data were analyzed with SPSS software. FINDINGS: The average level of perceived discomfort was 4.90 ± 2.669. A hierarchical regression model showed that pain and nonpain symptoms contributed 0.084 and 0.074 to the overall discomfort level, respectively. Dry mouth, sore throat, and urethral catheter discomfort were the most common nonpain symptoms. Sex, department, anesthesia duration, American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status classification and other symptoms were all related to symptom reports. CONCLUSIONS: PACU patients suffer medium levels of discomfort, with pain and nonpain symptoms contributing nearly equally to it. In addition, multiple related characteristics were identified.
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