Inadequate pain relief in ambulatory patients with human immunodeficiency virus disease in Port Harcourt
Longinus Ndubuisi Ebirim, Job Gogo Otokwala
Department of Anaesthesiology, University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Objectives: To estimate the prevalence of pain in ambulatory patients with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) in Port Harcourt and to determine the type, site, severity, and adequacy of the treatment of pain in these patients.
Materials and methods: A cross-sectional survey was carried out at two antiretroviral therapy centers in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. A data sheet, the brief pain inventory, and the short form of the McGill pain questionnaire were used and 157 patients in various stages of HIV/AIDS participated in the study.
Results: About 83.7% (129/157) of the ambulatory patients with HIV/AIDS complained of pains. Of the patients who reported pain 61.24% (79/129) reported nociceptive pain while 38.76% (50/129) reported neuropathic pain. Chest pain was the most frequent site of pain followed by headache. About 82% (106/129) of those who complained of pain received some form of analgesic, but only 23.58% (25/106) of these obtained adequate pain relief. The majority of the participants had significant impairment of their quality of life due to the severity of their pain.
Conclusion: Pain associated with significant impairment of quality of life is common in ambulatory patients with HIV/AIDS in Port Harcourt. Whereas the majority of the patients used various pain relief methods, analgesia was inadequate.
Keywords: ambulatory HIV/AIDS patients, pain, inadequate relief
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