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VAS scale to assess pain

VAS is the name given to a horizontal scale used to measure pain in the field of healthcare. The VAS scale makes it possible to establish a pain assessment that ranges from 0 to 10, with 0 being the complete absence of pain and 10 being excruciating pain.

The VAS scale is represented by a horizontal line , which is shown to the patient to mark the exact area in which he considers that the degree of pain he suffers is located. Once the line is marked, the doctor proceeds to the measurement using a ruler.

What is the EVA scale

The VAS scale (Visual Analogue Scale) is a straight line 10 centimeters long. At the extreme left is the figure that indicates “no pain”, and at the extreme right that of “excruciating pain. It is the patient who must point out which point on this line is best adjusted to how he perceives the intensity of the pain he is suffering.

Before applying the VAS scale, the doctor must determine whether the patient is in full use of his mental faculties . In the case of children or adults with some type of neurodegenerative disease, such as Alzheimer’s , it is possible to use a scale designed with colors, or even with faces that express different degrees of pain.

Why is the EVA scale used?

VAS is the most widely used pain scale today. Its rise in the health field is partly due to the fact that there is no procedure that objectively indicates the intensity of pain suffered by each patient.

The reason is that pain has a large component of psychic and emotional origin . In addition, neuro-hormonal components influence the assessment that each patient makes of the pain they suffer. Thus, there is a great diversity of possible outcomes.

Therefore, these types of scales are especially useful for checking the evolution of the patient, but they are not useful for extrapolating data to the population as a whole.

Even so, the VAS scale is very useful to assess, for example, how the administration of analgesics can control the pain suffered by the patient. In this way, it is easier for doctors to establish treatment guidelines in relation to the pain levels presented. And, of course, this scale allows them to know how the patient is responding to the established treatment.

Results of the VAS scale

This pain EVALUATION scale allows a total of three pain levels to be established.

  • <4: values ​​lower than 4 indicate that the intensity of pain suffered by the patient is mild or moderate.
  • 4 – 6: if the patient points to an area on the VAS scale between 4 and 6 centimeters, it means that his pain ranges from moderate to severe.
  • 6: when the pain assessment is greater than 6, the patient is in a serious, very serious, and even unbearable situation.

The importance of controlling pain

The fact of feeling pain is a perception that responds to subjectivity. Thus, there are some cases in which patients consider that it is only in their mind and therefore should not pay attention to it. This can sometimes lead the patient to not continue with the established medical treatment .

Well, although the psychological response is one of the most notorious, it is not the only complication derived from pain. And it is that this also produces various alterations in the normal functions of the body, affecting metabolism and blood circulation, among other factors.

Do not forget that pain is one of the most powerful stressors out there. Therefore, if it is maintained for a long period of time, it can cause the same results as anxiety and stress .

This is why it is so important to control pain as much as possible. In this way, the quality of life of the patient improves , and, in addition, the functions of his body return to normal.

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Hello Readers, I am Nikki Bella a Psychology student. I have always been concerned about human behavior and the mental processes that lead us to act and think the way we do. My collaboration as an editor in the psychology area of ​​Well Being Pole has allowed me to investigate further and expand my knowledge in the field of mental health; I have also acquired great knowledge about physical health and well-being, two fundamental bases that are directly related and are part of all mental health.

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