Ethical dilemmas in pain management

Betty R. Ferrell, Diane Novy, Mark D. Sullivan, John Banja, Michel Y. Dubois, Melvin C. Gitlin, Daniel Hamaty, Allen Lebovits, Arthur G. Lipman, Philipp M. Lippe, Jeffrey Livovich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to survey the membership of the American Pain Society and the American Academy of Pain Medicine to determine their beliefs about ethical dilemmas in pain management practice. Respondents rated ethical dilemmas for their importance as well as their own competence in dealing with these ethical issues. The survey also included an open-ended question that asked respondents to describe clinical situations in which they had encountered ethical dilemmas. A total of 1,105 surveys were analyzed, with physicians (n = 612), nurses (n = 189), and psychologists (n = 166) representing the professions with the greatest response. Management of pain at the end] of life, general undertreatment of pain, and undertreatment of pain in the elderly were the most frequently encountered dilemmas. Qualitative data were analyzed to identify ethical issues in the case examples provided by the respondents. Major themes included inappropriate pain management, barriers to care, interactions and conflicts with others, regulatory/legal issues, euthanasia, assisted suicide, and research issues. We conclude that ethical dilemmas are common in pain management practice and that resolution of these dilemmas requires commitment by individual professionals as well as health systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-180
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Pain
Volume2
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 30 2001
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Pain Management
Ethics
Assisted Suicide
Pain
Euthanasia
Mental Competency
Surveys and Questionnaires
Nurses
Psychology
Physicians
Health
Research

Keywords

  • ethical dilemmas
  • ethical issues
  • ethics
  • management
  • undertreatment of pain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Nursing(all)

Cite this

Ferrell, B. R., Novy, D., Sullivan, M. D., Banja, J., Dubois, M. Y., Gitlin, M. C., ... Livovich, J. (2001). Ethical dilemmas in pain management. Journal of Pain, 2(3), 171-180. https://doi.org/10.1054/jpai.2001.21596

Ethical dilemmas in pain management. / Ferrell, Betty R.; Novy, Diane; Sullivan, Mark D.; Banja, John; Dubois, Michel Y.; Gitlin, Melvin C.; Hamaty, Daniel; Lebovits, Allen; Lipman, Arthur G.; Lippe, Philipp M.; Livovich, Jeffrey.

In: Journal of Pain, Vol. 2, No. 3, 30.06.2001, p. 171-180.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ferrell, BR, Novy, D, Sullivan, MD, Banja, J, Dubois, MY, Gitlin, MC, Hamaty, D, Lebovits, A, Lipman, AG, Lippe, PM & Livovich, J 2001, 'Ethical dilemmas in pain management', Journal of Pain, vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 171-180. https://doi.org/10.1054/jpai.2001.21596
Ferrell BR, Novy D, Sullivan MD, Banja J, Dubois MY, Gitlin MC et al. Ethical dilemmas in pain management. Journal of Pain. 2001 Jun 30;2(3):171-180. https://doi.org/10.1054/jpai.2001.21596
Ferrell, Betty R. ; Novy, Diane ; Sullivan, Mark D. ; Banja, John ; Dubois, Michel Y. ; Gitlin, Melvin C. ; Hamaty, Daniel ; Lebovits, Allen ; Lipman, Arthur G. ; Lippe, Philipp M. ; Livovich, Jeffrey. / Ethical dilemmas in pain management. In: Journal of Pain. 2001 ; Vol. 2, No. 3. pp. 171-180.
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