Pain behaviors: postsurgical responses of children and adolescents.

M. D. Tesler, W. L. Holzemer, M. C. Savedra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


There is scant data identifying the range and variety of pain behaviors associated with ongoing, short-term acute pain of older children and adolescents. The purposes of this study were to identify and record pain behaviors manifested by children and adolescents during the first 3 days after surgery and examine the relationship between behaviors and self-report of pain intensity. Data were collected from 37 multi-ethnic children and adolescents using the Word Graphic Rating Scale for self-report of pain intensity and the Pediatric Pain Behavior List to record pain behaviors. The five most frequently observed behaviors were calm, maintaining one position, flexing limbs, eyes shut, and knees drawn up. All children reported pain on the first 2 days postsurgery. Many children who were lying in one position with a calm expression, at the same time, reported moderate to severe pain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-47
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of pediatric nursing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1998
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics


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