Painful procedures in the ED
Painful procedures in the emergency department are often a source of anxiety for children, parents and even emergency medicine practitioners.
We all want to do our best to minimize distress in children presenting to the ED. For example in the case of venepuncture, a range of pharmacological techniques are often implemented, including EMLA cream, intranasal fentanyl and midazolam in very distressed children.
However, there is evidence to show that distraction techniques alone or in conjunction with other medical interventions can be effective in reducing perception of pain and distress in paediatric patients (Oliveira et al 2017).
Some of the things that work best from my experience
Suggestion for regional/ smaller mixed ED
Oliveira, N., Santos, J. and Linhares, M. (2017), Audiovisual distraction for pain relief in paediatric inpatients: A crossover study. Eur J Pain, 21: 178-187. https://doi.org/10.1002/ejp.915
Dr Jacqueline Mills
Dr Danielle Scarfe