Pain in Infancy and Childhood

Editor(s): International Committee of Paediatricians Annales Nestlé Vol.57 / 1,  1999
  • Physiology of Pain in Infants and Children

    Author(s): K.J.S. Anand

    Newborn infants requiring surgical operations rarely were given the benefits of anaesthesia or postoperative analgesia until recently [1]. Lack of research on the physiology of pain during development promoted the myths that infants and children do not experience pain in the same way as adult patients and that the use of anaesthetic or analgesic drugs would expose them to the unnecessary risk of side effects and complications [2]. Randomized clinical trials investigating the use of potent anaesthesia/analgesia showed significant reductions in the physiologic responses and postoperative complications in those infants given adequate anaesthesia [1, 3, 4]. These data stimulated a greater scientific interest in the developing pathways and mechanisms that are associated with pain perception and deepened our understanding of the developmental biology of pain [5-9].

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