Pain is divided into two major categories according to its origin and duration: acute and chronic.
Acute pain can originate:
- Outside hospital: due to an accident, trauma, sudden illness, inflammation etc.
- After surgery: inflammation can lead to pain. The expected duration of severe postoperative pain can differ depending on the type of surgery. Surgery to the chest (thorax) and upper abdomen will lead to severe pain for three to four days. Surgery to the lower abdomen, joints, bones, face and pelvic area will cause severe pain for two to three days.
Chronic pain is usually associated with diseases like:
- Diabetes and other chronic diseases
- Neuropathic disorders
Labour pain is an example of acute pain.
Pain in children
The management of pain in children needs special mention.
Reviewed by Prof CL Odendal, senior specialist at the department of anaesthesiology at the University of the Free State, April 2010.
Acupuncture for kids
Multiple Sclerosis South Africa
Arthritis Foundation of South Africa
The South African Society of Physiotherapy