John Libbey Eurotext

Gériatrie et Psychologie Neuropsychiatrie du Vieillissement


Pain assessment of nursing home's residents by certified nursing assistants: a real-world study Volume 17, issue 4, Décembre 2019


1 Université Paul Valéry Montpellier 3, Epsylon EA 4556, Montpellier, France
2 Fondation Partage et Vie, Montrouge, France
3 Plateforme Les Passerelles d’ô, Adages, Montpellier, France
4 Département de médecine générale, Université de Montpellier, Montpellier, France
* Correspondance

In French care facilities for dependent aged people (NHDAP), prevalence of pain among residents with dementia is high, and source of behavior disturbances and quality of life impairment. However, in spite of many international expert statements, pain remains under-assessed and under-managed in these patients. Certified nursing assistants (CNA) are on the front-line in NHDAP to detect the presence of pain in residents with communication difficulties, while they received little training for pain management and directives for specific care. Moreover, no studies were presently devoted to the impact of demographic and socio-professional determinants of CNA on pain assessment. In our study, we assessed the presence and intensity of pain in cognitively impaired residents in NHDAP, by CNA performing as a pair for the morning care. 42 pairs were recruited and independently completed a standardized behavioral assessment for pain (Doloplus scale) as well as a numeric rating scale. CNA personal characteristics were investigated to analyse the determinants of potential assessment discrepancies between each of the pairs. Presence of pain was detected in 51.1 to 91.1% of the patients depending on the tool and analysis criteria. In 28.9% important discrepancies were observed in the pain assessment between the CNA pairs, which could be related to professional status and prior use of the observational assessment. These inter-rater discrepancies should be reduced providing clear pain assessment guidelines for CNA in NHDAP, and further studies should be completed to figure out the role of CNA personal determinants in the patients’ pain assessment.