STUDY OBJECTIVE - We determine whether emergency provider attitudes and demographics are associated with adherence to national guidelines for the management of acute sickle cell disease pain.
METHODS - We conducted a cross-sectional survey of emergency providers at the 2011 annual American College of Emergency Physicians Scientific Assembly, using a validated instrument to assess provider attitudes and self-reported analgesic practices toward patients with sickle cell disease. Multivariable, relative risk regressions were used to identify factors associated with adherence to guidelines.
RESULTS - There were 722 eligible participants, with a 93% complete response rate. Most providers self-reported adherence to the cornerstones of sickle cell disease pain management, including parenteral opioids (90%) and redosing opioids within 30 minutes if analgesia is inadequate (85%). Self-reported adherence was lower for other recommendations, including use of patient-controlled analgesia, acetaminophen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and hypotonic fluids for euvolemic patients. Emergency providers in the highest quartile of negative attitudes were 20% less likely to redose opioids within 30 minutes for inadequate analgesia (risk ratio 0.8; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.7 to 0.9). High-volume providers (those who treat more than 1 sickle cell disease patient per week), were less likely to redose opioids within 30 minutes for inadequate analgesia (risk ratio 0.9; 95% CI 0.8 to 0.9). Pediatric providers were 6.6 times more likely to use patient-controlled analgesia for analgesia (95% CI 2.6 to 16.6).
CONCLUSION - The majority of emergency providers report that they adhere to national guidelines about use of opioids for sickle cell disease-related acute pain episodes. Other recommendations have less penetration. Negative attitudes toward individuals with sickle cell disease are associated with lower adherence to guidelines.
Copyright © 2013 American College of Emergency Physicians. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.