Pediatric Pain Assessment and Indications for Opioids

Renee C.B. Manworren*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Assessment provides the foundation for effective treatment, but evidence indicates that pain is not optimally assessed or treated in children. This chapter provides an overview of pediatric pain assessment in children of all ages and developmental abilities who may require opioids. Historic influences and pediatric pain assessment knowledge gaps are reviewed. Key steps in pain assessment, including pain history and the hierarchy of pain assessment strategies are outlined. Reliability, validity, and utility of commonly used pediatric self-report and observational pain assessment tools are described; and other factors to consider when choosing pain assessment tools are discussed. In addition, anticipated approaches for precision pediatric pain assessment, including harnessing the potential for digital health technologies and genomics to guide pediatric opioid treatment, are introduced.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOpioid Therapy in Infants, Children, and Adolescents
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages25
ISBN (Electronic)9783030362874
ISBN (Print)9783030362867
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • Analgesic
  • Opioid
  • Pain assessment
  • Pain scores
  • Patient-reported outcomes
  • Pediatric pain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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