Innovation: Doctors Of Bhubaneswar-Based KIMS Come Up With Device To Measure Pain
Bhubaneswar: A team of doctors at the Kalinga Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS) in Odisha capital has developed a device to measure the pain in human being, much like a thermometer that is used to measure the body temperature.
The prototype, called “Objective Pain Score’’ (OPS), lends a level of accuracy to the ache, soreness or discomfort felt by a patient and helps the physician to prescribe medicines/procedures to manage it effectively. The breakthrough is the outcome of a research carried out by Dr Sailaja Sukanya, Post-Graduate Resident at the Department of Anaesthesiology, KIMS, a KIIT constituent.
The study was conducted under the guidance of Prof Amit Pradhan, while Dr Ashok Kumar Badamali formulated the OPS which could be validated with the physical condition of the patient or Visual Rating Scale (VRS). The scientific paper was titled “Development and validation of an Objective Pain Scoring System (OPS) and its correlation with VAS score for evaluation of postoperative pain in patients undergoing cardiac surgeries”.
Medical Superintendent, KIMS, Prof RC Das said the new method would become the new approach in the domain of pain management. The study evoked wide appreciation from experts who attended the National Conference of Indian Society for Study of Pain (ISSPCON)-2022, held in the city recently. Dr Sukanya presented her research work at the event.
“The algorithm created by this research can facilitate to conceptualise a device for automatic delivery of analgesics/ painkillers in patients corresponding to their objective pain score during surgery and mechanical ventilation in ICU,” Dr Das said.
Though heart rate and blood pressure have been used to assess pain, there has been no major study for objective assessment of pain, according to experts. Pain, in common understanding, can be termed as a distressing outcome of any underlying disease. International Association for the Study of Pain defines it as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with, or resembling that associated with, actual or potential tissue damage”.
Currently, there are various methods like Numerical Rating Scale (NRS), Verbal Rating Scale (VRS), and the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) to quantify pain but they are mostly subjective. It depends upon how the pain is experienced or perceived by the individual.
Based on the patient’s perception of pain, the doctors commonly use VAS for assessment of the degree of pain. The limitation with the VAS score is that it cannot quantify pain during the surgery and mechanical ventilation in ICU.