The main focus of managing chronic pain is to identify and treat the core issues:
- Lack of focus on patient care
- The discrepancy in pain reporting
An electronic pain diary can feasibly address these concerns and improve the quality of life.
Table of Content
|1.||Challenges in conventional chronic pain intervention|
|2.||Electronic pain diary|
Challenges in conventional chronic pain intervention
Lack of focus on patient care
Unfortunately, as pain persists over time, regular clinic visits with a physician may become more narrowly focused around particular pain treatments that produce limited improvement.
Treatment decisions often have to be made during brief clinic encounters. You may often feel neglected because no one is carefully attending to your concerns.
Discrepant pain reporting
One of the significant challenges in chronic pain management is the discrepancy between what happens in everyday life and what can be remembered in the physician’s office.
The formulation of proper diagnosis and the delivery of optimal care depends on accurate communication between you and your physician regarding symptoms based on memory recall, which is often imprecise.
During the day, the pain level can fluctuate significantly. The pain location might change over time, and so forth. Many aspects can trigger and influence pain.
However, when you are asked in the doctor’s office to reconstruct all these varying aspects, the challenge is immense. It is no surprise that the essential details are forgotten. This is why pain diaries should be used.
Electronic pain diary
Self-assessment and self-monitoring activities can allow you to be more actively involved in your care.
Benefits of electronic monitoring
The benefits of electronic monitoring include:
- Ease of data sharing
- Instant data access
- Use of summary charts and graphs
- Real-time sampling
- Numerous software applications that include self-care information
Furthermore, tracking progress with an electronic diary may:
- Increase compliance
- Allow you to become more informed about your condition
- Have a positive impact on changing perceptions of chronic pain
- Stimulate behavior change and improve mental health
Better awareness of your condition can also:
- Improve self-management of pain
- Focus on improvements rather than limitations to daily life
- Feel like your pain is more manageable
The electronic tracking can also help you to monitor aspects of your pain not previously considered. This includes fluctuations in the pattern of your pain levels, which requires changes in daily activities and medication usage.
Pain diaries enable you to contribute to your health care actively. And if utilized at home, the pain diary can also provide the physician with a more realistic insight into your pain perception in your typical environment.
A smartphone-based electronic pain diary
The potential use of a smartphone-based electronic pain diary seems to be a feasible and reliable method for conducting remote assessments of clinical features of pain over time. Thus, it may improve clinical monitoring, differential diagnosis, and treatment. Additional telephone instructions can also be given for urgent needs.
The use of an electronic pain diary is a valuable means to assess your clinical course and to identify changes in medical condition. With appropriate design, participant training, and sufficient monitoring, an electronic pain diary can capture daily pain data on a large scale.
Understanding your pain condition can help improve how you perceive your behaviors and your use of medications.