Postoperative pain management education during the surgery core rotation at McMaster University, Waterloo Regional Campus.

Authors

  • Nivedh Patro McMaster University
  • Graham Campbell

Abstract

Background: Opioid over-prescription continues to be a challenge in the postoperative setting for management of acute pain. Initiatives have been developed to standardize postoperative opioid prescribing with an emphasis on multimodal pain management. However, there is a concern medical education has not remained current on this topic.

Objective: The aim of this study is to explore current teaching around postoperative pain management during the surgery core rotation at McMaster University, Waterloo Regional Campus (WRC), and identify any opportunities for improvement.

Methods: A 13-item survey was developed to determine effectiveness of teaching around postoperative pain management during the surgery core and its alignment with current guidelines. The survey was disseminated to third year medical students at the WRC.

Results: Seven of nine respondents indicated that teaching on postoperative pain management and opioid reduction strategies was provided during the surgery core. All respondents receiving this teaching also indicated learning about a multimodal pain control approach consistent with current guidelines. However, only three of seven respondents noted receiving teaching on providing patient and caregiver education around the pain management plan, despite a strong recommendation in guidelines in favour of this practice.

Conclusions: Most students receive teaching on multimodal postoperative pain management and opioid reduction strategies during the surgery core at the WRC. Opportunities to strengthen the teaching include addressing the role of patient and caregiver education in the pain management plan as well as incorporating the topic into formal teaching such as classroom sessions or learning objectives in the surgery core. 

Keywords: postoperative; opioids; multimodal pain management; medical education; surgery

Author Biographies

Nivedh Patro, McMaster University

Nivedh Patro is a second-year medical student at the Waterloo Regional Campus of McMaster University. He completed an Honours & Co-op in Biomedical Science at the University of Ottawa.

Graham Campbell

Graham Campbell is a research coordinator at the Waterloo Regional Campus of McMaster University. He completed his graduate work at the University of Waterloo and has studied and written on a range of topics centred around the social impacts of health, immigration, and technology policy.

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Published

2020-12-26

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Section

Original Research Article