Chapter 6. Pain Assessment

  1. Alison Twycross Prinicipal Lecturer2,
  2. Stephanie J. Dowden Clinical Nurse Consultant3 and
  3. Elizabeth Bruce Lead Clinical Nurse Specialist4
  1. Jennifer Stinson Research Fellow Advanced Practice Nurse

Published Online: 7 DEC 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444322743.ch6

Managing Pain in Children: A Clinical Guide

Managing Pain in Children: A Clinical Guide

How to Cite

Stinson, J. (2009) Pain Assessment, in Managing Pain in Children: A Clinical Guide (eds A. Twycross, S. J. Dowden and E. Bruce), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444322743.ch6

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Children's Nursing, Kingston University and St George's University of London, Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences, London, United Kingdom

  2. 3

    Paediatric Palliative Care, Princess Margaret Hospital for Children, Subiaco, Perth, Australia (Formerly Clinical Nurse Consultant, Children's Pain Management Service, Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia)

  3. 4

    Pain Control Service, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust, London, United Kingdom

Author Information

  1. CIHR Post-Doctoral, Chronic Pain Program, Department of Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 7 DEC 2009
  2. Published Print: 20 MAR 2009

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405168946

Online ISBN: 9781444322743



  • pain assessment;
  • assessment of pain in children from neonates to adolescents;
  • healthcare professionals - involved, directly or indirectly in children's pain assessment;
  • pain measurement and pain assessment;
  • pain assessment tools focusing on measuring pain intensity;
  • history of child's prior pain experiences and current pain complaints in pain assessment;
  • assessing child's pain using developmentally appropriate pain assessment tool;
  • Wong-Baker FACES Pain Scale – Revised and numerical rating scale (NRS);
  • behavioural tools - using behavioural indicators of pain;
  • pain assessment in cognitively impaired children


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Nurses' Role in Pain Assessment

  • Pain Measurement and Pain Assessment

  • Self-Report Tools

  • Behavioural Tools

  • Physiological Indicators

  • Pain Assessment Tools for Neonates

  • Pain Assessment in Cognitively Impaired Children

  • Choosing the Right Pain Assessment Measure

  • How Often Should Pain Be Assessed?

  • Summary

  • References