Introducing a patient-controlled analgesia-based acute pain relief service into southern Africa - the first 10 months
The 10 months after the introduction of the first acute pain relief service (APRS) in southern Africa is described. Seven hundred patients were treated with morphine by means of patient-controlled analgesia (PCA), administered to patients after major surgery or extensive burns via the intravenous (IV) or subcutaneous (SC) route. The efficacy, safety and resource implications were assessed. The results showed that pain control was good, with the majority of patients (66%) experiencing mild pain during the first 24 hours. The pump was used by each patient for an average of 4,32 days. The mean total dose of morphine used was 105,2 mg via the IV route and 114,6 mg via the SC route. Over the 10 months, the 25 PCA pumps worked 80 000 pump-hours; only 3 pumps malfunctioned. A total of 86 861 mg morphine was used during this period with rare morbidity and no mortality. Only 1 patient experienced sedation and respiratory depression. The benefits of an APRS with PCA to patients and medical staff alike are discussed.
Copyright remains in the Author’s name. The work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial Works License. Authors are required to complete and sign an Author Agreement form that outlines Author and Publisher rights and terms of publication. The Agreement form should be uploaded along with other submissions files and any submission will be considered incomplete without it [forthcoming].
Material submitted for publication in the SAMJ is accepted provided it has not been published or submitted for publication elsewhere. Please inform the editorial team if the main findings of your paper have been presented at a conference and published in abstract form, to avoid copyright infringement. The SAMJ does not hold itself responsible for statements made by the authors.
Previously published images
If an image/figure has been previously published, permission to reproduce or alter it must be obtained by the authors from the original publisher and the figure legend must give full credit to the original source. This credit should be accompanied by a letter indicating that permission to reproduce the image has been granted to the author/s. This letter should be uploaded as a supplementary file during submission.