Managing Pain in the Institutionalized Elderly

The Nursing Role
  • Nancy Wells
  • Merrie Kaas
  • Karen Feldt
Part of the The Springer Series in Adult Development and Aging book series (SSAD)


Pain is a common symptom across all age groups but becomes increasingly prevalent in older adults, who experience a variety of chronic diseases that are potentially painful (Ferrell, 1991; Foley, 1993; Harkins, 1988). Attention has recently been focused on the adequate assessment and treatment of pain in the elderly institutionalized population (Ferrell, 1991; Parmelee, Smith, & Katz, 1993; Sengstaken & King, 1993). Although elders residing in the community may not adequately treat pain for a variety of reasons (e.g., personal beliefs and reluctance to take pain medications), institutionalized elders, whether in acute-care or long-term-care settings, rely on nursing staff to appropriately assess pain, administer pain medications as necessary, and evaluate the response to such medications (Carr, 1990; Lavies, Hart, Rounsefell, & Runciman, 1992; Seers, 1987). Nurses wield much of the control over the management of pain in institutional environments.


Pain Relief Pain Management Nursing Staff Cancer Pain Pain Assessment 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nancy Wells
    • 1
  • Merrie Kaas
    • 2
  • Karen Feldt
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Nursing ResearchVanderbilt University Medical CenterNashvilleUSA
  2. 2.School of NursingUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA
  3. 3.Ramsey Nursing Home ServicesSt. PaulUSA

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