Pain and Alzheimer's disease

September 6, 2017 by Meredith Jackson, Vanderbilt University

For people with Alzheimer's disease (AD), pain that interferes with daily activities may be more common than people with AD typically report.

This is the major implication of a study by Jinjiao Wang, Ph.D., R.N., Todd Monroe, Ph.D., R.N., and colleagues published recently in the journal Aging and Mental Health.

The Brief Pain Inventory-Short Form was administered as a structured pain interview to examine pain interference in 52 communicative adults with AD who were at least 65 years old and who reported being free from requiring daily pain medication.

The interview detected an increased risk of pain interference as well as symptoms of depression in approximately 20 percent of respondents. Those with better cognitive function reported more pain interference and , suggesting that pain is likely to be under-reported as AD progresses.

Clinicians should regularly assess pain interference and depressive symptoms in people with AD to identify pain that might be otherwise overlooked, the researchers concluded. Using a structured interview may help.

Explore further: Can pain increase the risk of dying early?

More information: Jinjiao Wang et al. Pain interference and depressive symptoms in communicative people with Alzheimer's disease: a pilot study, Aging & Mental Health (2017). DOI: 10.1080/13607863.2017.1318258

Related Stories

Can pain increase the risk of dying early?

June 7, 2017
Pain that interferes with daily life, rather than pain per se, was associated with an increased risk of early death in a recent analysis.

Exercise cuts pain interference from diabetic neuropathy

April 13, 2015
(HealthDay)—Aerobic exercise may help reduce perceived pain interference resulting from diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN), according to a brief research report published online March 20 in Pain Medicine.

Post-op pain may often be underrated by inpatient staff

July 20, 2017
(HealthDay)—Postoperative pain is frequently underrated when assessed by nursing staff on wards, according to a study published online July 14 in PAIN Practice.

Older patients have a higher pain tolerance after major surgery—or do they?

June 3, 2017
New research presented at this year's Euroanaesthesia meeting in Geneva (3-5 June) suggests that age plays a part in the level of pain experienced after major surgery, with older people most likely to better tolerate serious ...

New device for peripheral nerve stim cuts chronic low back pain

March 20, 2017
(HealthDay)—A novel method of short-term percutaneous peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) is useful for producing pain relief and reducing medication use among patients with chronic low back pain (LBP), according to a case ...

Cognitive behavior therapy significantly reduced depression and anxiety in chronic pain patients

June 15, 2017
The results of a study presented today at the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology (EULAR) 2017 has shown that Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, a form of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) that focuses on psychological ...

Recommended for you

Flu season forecasts could be more accurate with access to health care companies' data

September 19, 2018
In an era when for-profit companies collect a wealth of data about us, new research from The University of Texas at Austin shows that data collected by health care companies could—if made available to researchers and public ...

Researchers discover influenza virus doesn't replicate equally in all cells

September 19, 2018
The seasonal flu is caused by different subtypes of Influenza A virus and typically leads to the death of half a million people each year. In order to better understand this virus and how it spreads, University of Minnesota ...

Drugs that stop mosquitoes catching malaria could help eradicate the disease

September 18, 2018
Researchers have identified compounds that could prevent malaria parasites from being able to infect mosquitoes, halting the spread of disease.

Vaccine opt-outs dropped slightly when California added more hurdles

September 18, 2018
In response to spiking rates of parents opting their children out of vaccinations that are required to enroll in school—and just before a huge outbreak of measles at Disneyland in 2014—California passed AB-2109. The law ...

New evidence of a preventative therapy for gout

September 17, 2018
Among patients with cardiovascular disease, it's a common complaint: a sudden, piercing pain, stiffness or tenderness in a joint that lasts for days at a time with all signs pointing to a gout attack. Gout and cardiovascular ...

"Atypical" virus discovered to be driver of certain kidney diseases

September 14, 2018
An international research team led by Wolfgang Weninger has discovered a previously unknown virus that acts as a "driver" for certain kidney diseases (interstitial nephropathy). This "atypical" virus, which the scientists ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.