What is Nursing Diagnosis For Acute Pain

by BodyAtRisk

Pain can cause a lot of discomforts. According to the nursing diagnosis for acute pain, the pain goes between one second to six months. It can also be a result of one of your body organs being in an abnormal condition. In most cases, whenever you are in pain, all the attention goes to that particular part of your body.

nursing diagnosis for acute pain

Pain can be differentiated into two classifications. It can be acute pain or chronic pain.

Acute pain does not stay for long. It can go away even without taking medication.

On the other hand, chronic pain can go as far as six months.

Chronic pain is a continuous pain that causes a lot of distress to almost the whole body. Chronic pain can be so severe that it can last even after what caused the pain goes away.

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Nursing Diagnosis for Acute Pain

It is advisable that a patient who experiences this type of pain from time to time to visit the nearest medical facility. Acute pain can be accompanied by other forms of discomfort such as vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, or an itching effect. (Zeleníková, 2014) The patient can also experience other vital signs such as crying, facial experiences, moaning, or a guarded position.

Acute pain may have a slow or sudden pain intensity with an intensity that ranges from mild to severe pain. The pain may be due to surgery, any medical procedure, trauma, stress, or illness.

Diagnosis For The Pain

As a diagnosis for the pain, it should be evident from either the patient’s confession to feel the pain, losing appetite, protective or guarded behavior, sleep discomfort, not being active to perform daily physical activities, autonomic responses, changes in the tone of muscles, minimum focus, losing appetite, facial expressions for pain or any expressive behavior such as crying, being restless or moaning. (Macintyre, 2014)

Diagnosis For The Pain

The first thing to do to a patient who reports acute pain is when the patient goes through medical assessment. Eth assessment can be on the organ experiencing pain or the entire body.

The assessment helps in knowing the cause of the pain and the immediate pain relief procedures.

The nurse can advocate for pain medication or pain management options as a result of the assessment tests. Also, the patient can receive prescribed pain relief medication.

Different types of pain require different approaches. (Schug, 2016)

Pain Diagnosis

As a pain diagnosis, the patient may use no pharmacological pain relief procedures such as relaxing, musical therapy, or even breathing exercises. The process works by increasing the rate of releasing endorphins, and it also boosts the therapeutic effects of pain relief medications.

Another diagnosis can be going to a quiet environment, and this can help if the cause of eth pain in depression and stress. After the medication and pain relief procedure, the patient can check-up to ensure that all the pain is over, and there is no sign of coming back.

Nursing Diagnosis for Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is characterized as continuous pain that goes for more than six months continuously. The intensity of chronic pain can move from mild to incapacitating unbearable pain. Chronic pain can prevent the ability of the patient to perform their normal daily activities. It causes a feeling of despair.

Nursing Diagnosis for Chronic Pain

Chronic pain can be malignant or non-malignant. Malignant pain is because of cancer and other long-term diseases. 

On the other hand, malignant pain is persistent pain beyond the healing time for a patient. (Slamková, 2016)

Chronic pain can be related to physical or psychological disability.

  • Some of the injuring agents for chronic pain are psychological, chemical, physical, and biological.
  • Some of eth possible evidences for chronic pain include the patient’s report for pain, changes in appetite, the difference in the sleep pattern, change in weight, irritability, depression, restlessness, minimum interaction with other people, facial mask, atrophy of involved muscles, and a guarded position.
  • The desired outcomes after medication include; demonstrating relief of pain, showing the ability to be involved in activities, showing the use of therapeutic interventions, and demonstrating pain relief methods.

First Intervention

The nurse’s first intervention to a chronic pain patient in taking a comprehensive assessment that will show the cause of the pain and the nurse can be in a position to determine which the best medication for the pain relief is.

The nurse can also check the patient’s medical history to determine the patient’s ailment and drug sequence. It helps in obtaining eth medical history of eth patient. (Williams, 2016)

Nursing First Intervention

For the diagnosis of the pain, the patient can undertake breathing exercises, which helps achieve a general relaxation. It also aids in reducing the perception of the pain.

The nurse can also explore the need for the patient’s medication. The analgesics include opioids, NSAIDs, and non-opioids.

The combination of the three analgesics will help in relieving the pain. Another diagnosis is the use of non-pharmacological interventions such as guided imagery, massage, and breathing techniques. 

These aid in reinforcing the pharmacological interventions. As the patient takes medication, it is best to monitor the appetite and weight of the patient.


More assessment procedures may be taken to evaluate how effective the pain can be and whether the medication needs to be decreased or increased. It is essential to monitor the patient’s medication to achieve maximum pain relief without having intense side effects.

It is also necessary to ensure that pain completely heals without experiencing the pain again. 

 evaluate how effective the pain can
evaluate how effective the pain can


Pain is mostly the reason why patients visit doctors. For example, if you have asthma, you will start by experiencing chest pains, and therefore, you will visit the doctor to examine your chest. That is why it is necessary for the patient to first go through an assessment.

The doctor can determine the reason behind the pain and which are the best medications for the pain. Patients may run to us technology methods, and some may Google, which is the best medication.

It is advisable to visit the doctor so you can get a proper remedy for the pain. Having relief from the pain will enable you to focus on other activities and decrease discomfort.


Zeleníková, R., Žiaková, K., Čáp, J., & Jarošová, D. (2014). Content Validation of the Nursing    Diagnosis Acute Pain in the C zech R epublic and S lovakia. International Journal of Nursing Knowledge25(3), 139-146.

Slamková, A., & Poledníková, Ľ. (2016). Nursing diagnosis Chronic Pain from the patients’            perspective. Kontakt18(4), e224-e230.

Macintyre, P. E., & Schug, S. A. (2014). Acute pain management: a practical guide. Crc Press.

Schug, S. A., Palmer, G. M., Scott, D. A., Halliwell, R., & Trinca, J. (2016). Acute pain   management: scientific evidence, 2015. Medical Journal of Australia204(8), 315-317.

Maixner, W., Fillingim, R. B., Williams, D. A., Smith, S. B., & Slade, G. D. (2016). Overlapping            chronic pain conditions: implications for diagnosis and classification. The Journal of        Pain17(9), T93-T107.

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