A prospective audit of postoperative pain control in pediatric patients

AORN J. 2009 Oct;90(4):531-42. doi: 10.1016/j.aorn.2009.05.001.


Pain is a subjective experience that is affected by physical, emotional, and psychological factors, and reliable assessment of pain can be a challenge in the pediatric population. A quality improvement project was conducted at one Canadian health care facility to examine the effectiveness of the postoperative pain management strategy for children admitted to the postanesthesia care unit (PACU). Effective control of postoperative pain involves several preventive strategies that include preoperative analgesia, appropriate use of intraoperative analgesic techniques, and identification of children at risk for significant postoperative pain. Successful implementation of these techniques requires a multidisciplinary team approach involving the patient, the PACU nurses, the anesthesia care provider, and other surgical team members.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Analgesics / therapeutic use
  • Anesthetics, Local / therapeutic use
  • British Columbia
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Intensive Care Units, Pediatric
  • Nursing Audit*
  • Pain Measurement / methods
  • Pain Measurement / nursing
  • Pain, Postoperative / nursing
  • Pain, Postoperative / prevention & control*
  • Perioperative Care / nursing*
  • Prospective Studies


  • Analgesics
  • Anesthetics, Local