Scientific Evidence Showing the
Value of the Pain Scale for Professionals
If you have any doubts that our Pain Scale For Professionals really is a valuable scientific tool, please refer to the following publications.
- ABILITY TO MEASURE SMALL DIFFERENCES.
Patients using the Pain Scale for Professionals are able to distinguish very small differences in the intensity of painful stimuli. For example they can distinguish between the level of heat-caused pain only one degree apart. Eg. 47° C – 48° C) .
Rosier, E. M., Iadarola, M.J., and Coghill, R. C. Reproducibility of pain measurement and pain perception. Pain 98(1-2): 205-216, 2002.
- THE NUMBERS ARE REALLY MEANINGFUL
The Pain Scale for Professionals accurately provides proportions or ratios of pain. Thus under experimental testing, a reading of, say 8.4 can be trusted to twice as intense as a reading of 4.2
NOTE: when patients were asked to measure their pain by picking a number from 1 to 10 on a simple ruler (the so-called Numerical Rating Scale), the resulting numbers did not accurately measure ratios. Thus, say an 8 on a 10 point scale is not necessarily twice as intense as a rating of 4.
Price, D.D., Long, S., and Harkins, S.W.: A comparison of pain measurement characteristics of mechanical visual analogue and simple numerical rating scales of pain. Pain 56: 217-226, 1994.
- IDEALLY SUITED TO EFFECTIVELY MEASURE PAIN.
Survey of what criteria a measuring tool for pain should possess it if is to be truly effective for medical purposes. Then illustrates how the Pain Scale for Professionals fulfills most of those criteria.
Price, D. D., Riley, J. L., and Wade, J. B.: Psychophysical approaches to the measurement of the dimensions and stages of pain. R. Melzack and D. C. Turk (Eds.), Handbook of pain measurement, Second Edition, Guilford Press, pp. 53-75 2001.
- SUPPORTED BY BRAIN STUDIES
Research is now expanding to explore the different dimensions of pain and how they are reflected in brain activity.
Price, D. D.: Psychological and neural mechanisms of the affective dimension of pain. Science, 288 (5472): 1769-1772, 2000.
- INCREASED PAIN RATINGS RELATED TO INCREASED ACTIVITY IN BRAIN
Research shows that ratings on the Pain Scale for Professionals are strongly associated with activity in the pain processing areas of the human brain.
Coghill R. C., McHaffie, J.G., Yen YF. Neural correlates of interindividual differences in the subjective experience of pain. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci USA. 100(14):8538-8542, 2003.
- VERSATILITY TO MEASURE DIFFERENT TYPES OF PAIN.
The Pain Scale for Professionals contains two scales, one for pain sensation intensity and the other for pain unpleasantness. The latter scale also can be used for emotional pain such as depression and anxiety and, for that matter, negative emotions in general. With a re-wording of the anchors (i.e., not at all pleasant to the most positive feeling imaginable), the scale can be used to rate pleasant or happy feelings. Two publications that validate and demonstrate the use of these types of scales for other emotions include the papers by Price and Barrell (1984; 1985). These types of Pain-emotion scales are used in the Medical College of Virginia Pain Questionnaire (see Wade et al., below).
Price, D.D., and Barrell, J.J.: Some general laws of human emotion:
Interrelationships between intensities of desire, expectations, and
emotional feeling. J. Person. 52: 389-409, 1984.
Price, D.D., Barrell, J. E., and Barrell, J.J.: A quantitative
experiential analysis of human emotions. Motivation and Emotion 9: 19-38, 1985.
Wade, J. B., Dougherty, L. M., Archer, C. R., and Price, D. D.,
Assessing the stages of pain processing: a multivariate approach, Pain, 68: 157-168, 1996.