Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain: Does it matter how you do it?

Steven J. Kamper, Sanneke J.M. Grootjans, Zoe A. Michaleff, Christopher G. Maher, James H. Mcauley, Michele Sterling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate whether variations in the way that pain intensity is measured in patients with neck pain influences the magnitude of pain ratings. The study uses data from 3 longitudinal studies (n = 361 at baseline) on people with neck pain due to whiplash injuries. Pain measures included verbal rating scales, numerical rating scales and a visual analog scale. Different measures asked patient to rate current pain, average pain over 24 hours, over 1 week, or over 4 weeks. Scores were converted to a 0-100 scale and tracked over time, correlations between measures were calculated. Mixed models regression was used to explore the factors which influenced the differences between scores on the measures. Scores on the different measures were significantly different from each other in each dataset (P < 0.02). The effect of recall period was significant in all datasets and the effect of number of response options was significant in 2 of 3 datasets. Pain intensity ratings appear to be sensitive to method of measurement. It is likely the length of recall time (eg, pain today vs. average pain over 4 weeks) has a significant influence on pain ratings. The influence of number of response options is less certain. Systematic reviewers should not uncritically rescale and pool absolute pain scores from instruments with varying scale descriptors or recall periods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-167
Number of pages9
JournalPain Practice
Volume15
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2015
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Neck Pain
Pain
Whiplash Injuries
Visual Analog Scale
Longitudinal Studies

Cite this

Kamper, S. J., Grootjans, S. J. M., Michaleff, Z. A., Maher, C. G., Mcauley, J. H., & Sterling, M. (2015). Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain: Does it matter how you do it? Pain Practice, 15(2), 159-167. https://doi.org/10.1111/papr.12169
Kamper, Steven J. ; Grootjans, Sanneke J.M. ; Michaleff, Zoe A. ; Maher, Christopher G. ; Mcauley, James H. ; Sterling, Michele. / Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain : Does it matter how you do it?. In: Pain Practice. 2015 ; Vol. 15, No. 2. pp. 159-167.
@article{93cb4ab6a69e4c978adff7304e9912c1,
title = "Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain: Does it matter how you do it?",
abstract = "The aim of this study was to investigate whether variations in the way that pain intensity is measured in patients with neck pain influences the magnitude of pain ratings. The study uses data from 3 longitudinal studies (n = 361 at baseline) on people with neck pain due to whiplash injuries. Pain measures included verbal rating scales, numerical rating scales and a visual analog scale. Different measures asked patient to rate current pain, average pain over 24 hours, over 1 week, or over 4 weeks. Scores were converted to a 0-100 scale and tracked over time, correlations between measures were calculated. Mixed models regression was used to explore the factors which influenced the differences between scores on the measures. Scores on the different measures were significantly different from each other in each dataset (P < 0.02). The effect of recall period was significant in all datasets and the effect of number of response options was significant in 2 of 3 datasets. Pain intensity ratings appear to be sensitive to method of measurement. It is likely the length of recall time (eg, pain today vs. average pain over 4 weeks) has a significant influence on pain ratings. The influence of number of response options is less certain. Systematic reviewers should not uncritically rescale and pool absolute pain scores from instruments with varying scale descriptors or recall periods.",
author = "Kamper, {Steven J.} and Grootjans, {Sanneke J.M.} and Michaleff, {Zoe A.} and Maher, {Christopher G.} and Mcauley, {James H.} and Michele Sterling",
year = "2015",
month = "2",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1111/papr.12169",
language = "English",
volume = "15",
pages = "159--167",
journal = "Pain Practice",
issn = "1533-2500",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "2",

}

Kamper, SJ, Grootjans, SJM, Michaleff, ZA, Maher, CG, Mcauley, JH & Sterling, M 2015, 'Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain: Does it matter how you do it?' Pain Practice, vol. 15, no. 2, pp. 159-167. https://doi.org/10.1111/papr.12169

Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain : Does it matter how you do it? / Kamper, Steven J.; Grootjans, Sanneke J.M.; Michaleff, Zoe A.; Maher, Christopher G.; Mcauley, James H.; Sterling, Michele.

In: Pain Practice, Vol. 15, No. 2, 01.02.2015, p. 159-167.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Measuring pain intensity in patients with neck pain

T2 - Does it matter how you do it?

AU - Kamper, Steven J.

AU - Grootjans, Sanneke J.M.

AU - Michaleff, Zoe A.

AU - Maher, Christopher G.

AU - Mcauley, James H.

AU - Sterling, Michele

PY - 2015/2/1

Y1 - 2015/2/1

N2 - The aim of this study was to investigate whether variations in the way that pain intensity is measured in patients with neck pain influences the magnitude of pain ratings. The study uses data from 3 longitudinal studies (n = 361 at baseline) on people with neck pain due to whiplash injuries. Pain measures included verbal rating scales, numerical rating scales and a visual analog scale. Different measures asked patient to rate current pain, average pain over 24 hours, over 1 week, or over 4 weeks. Scores were converted to a 0-100 scale and tracked over time, correlations between measures were calculated. Mixed models regression was used to explore the factors which influenced the differences between scores on the measures. Scores on the different measures were significantly different from each other in each dataset (P < 0.02). The effect of recall period was significant in all datasets and the effect of number of response options was significant in 2 of 3 datasets. Pain intensity ratings appear to be sensitive to method of measurement. It is likely the length of recall time (eg, pain today vs. average pain over 4 weeks) has a significant influence on pain ratings. The influence of number of response options is less certain. Systematic reviewers should not uncritically rescale and pool absolute pain scores from instruments with varying scale descriptors or recall periods.

AB - The aim of this study was to investigate whether variations in the way that pain intensity is measured in patients with neck pain influences the magnitude of pain ratings. The study uses data from 3 longitudinal studies (n = 361 at baseline) on people with neck pain due to whiplash injuries. Pain measures included verbal rating scales, numerical rating scales and a visual analog scale. Different measures asked patient to rate current pain, average pain over 24 hours, over 1 week, or over 4 weeks. Scores were converted to a 0-100 scale and tracked over time, correlations between measures were calculated. Mixed models regression was used to explore the factors which influenced the differences between scores on the measures. Scores on the different measures were significantly different from each other in each dataset (P < 0.02). The effect of recall period was significant in all datasets and the effect of number of response options was significant in 2 of 3 datasets. Pain intensity ratings appear to be sensitive to method of measurement. It is likely the length of recall time (eg, pain today vs. average pain over 4 weeks) has a significant influence on pain ratings. The influence of number of response options is less certain. Systematic reviewers should not uncritically rescale and pool absolute pain scores from instruments with varying scale descriptors or recall periods.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84922133037&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1111/papr.12169

DO - 10.1111/papr.12169

M3 - Article

VL - 15

SP - 159

EP - 167

JO - Pain Practice

JF - Pain Practice

SN - 1533-2500

IS - 2

ER -