CHICAGO – The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) hosted a virtual pain summit on February 20, 2021 with 14 medical specialty societies to discuss acute surgical pain principles that will serve as the basis for a multi-society acute pain resource. The first-of-its-kind event brought together a group of representing the major surgical stakeholders in acute pain management with the goal of reaching consensus on important principles regarding the treatment of perioperative pain. These principles will be developed into a guiding resource for clinicians and all members of the surgical care team in 2021.
“Every surgeon and anesthesiologist wants to be sure their patients’ acute surgical pain is controlled,” said ASA President Beverly K. Philip, M.D., FACA, FASA. “At the recent summit, we learned from each other what progress has been made toward each principle, what challenges or barriers hamper the successful implementation of the principles and what innovations we should embrace as best practices toward optimal acute pain management.”
The principles which will serve as the foundation for the acute surgical pain resource recommend that clinicians should:
1. Conduct a preoperative evaluation including assessment of medical and psychological conditions, concomitant medications, history of chronic pain, substance abuse, and previous postoperative treatment regimens and responses, to guide the perioperative pain management plan.
2. Use a validated pain assessment tool to track responses to postoperative pain treatments and adjust treatment plans accordingly.
3. Offer multimodal analgesia, or the use of a variety of analgesic medications and techniques combined with nonpharmacological interventions, for the treatment of postoperative pain in adults.
4. Provide patient and family-centered, individually tailored education to the patient (and/or responsible caregiver), including information on treatment options for managing postoperative pain, and document the plan and goals for postoperative pain management.
5. Provide education to all patients (adult) and primary caregivers on the pain treatment plan, including proper storage and disposal of opioids and tapering of analgesics after hospital discharge.
6. Adjust the pain management plan based on adequacy of pain relief and presence of adverse events.
7. Have access to consultation with a pain specialist for patients who have inadequately controlled postoperative pain or at high risk of inadequately controlled postoperative pain at their facilities (e.g., opioid-tolerant, history of substance abuse).
Participating medical organizations were:
• American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
• American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery
• American Association of Neurological Surgeons
• American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
• American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
• American College of Surgeons
• American Hospital Association
• American Medical Association
• American Society of Breast Surgeons
• American Society of Plastic Surgeons
• American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine
• American Urological Association
• Society of Thoracic Surgeons
THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF ANESTHESIOLOGISTS
Founded in 1905, the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) is an educational, research and scientific society with more than 54,000 members organized to raise and maintain the standards of the medical practice of anesthesiology. ASA is committed to ensuring physician anesthesiologists evaluate and supervise the medical care of patients before, during and after surgery to provide the highest quality and safest care every patient deserves.
For more information on the field of anesthesiology, visit the American Society of Anesthesiologists online at asahq.org. To learn more about the role physician anesthesiologists play in ensuring patient safety, visit asahq.org/madeforthismoment. Like ASA on Facebook and follow ASALifeline on Twitter.
# # #