OBJECTIVE - To correlate the amount and types of pain medications prescribed to CRPS patients, using the Medication Quantification Scale, and patients' subjective pain levels.
DESIGN - An international, multisite, retrospective review.
SETTING - University medical centers in the United States, Israel, Germany, and the Netherlands.
SUBJECTS/METHODS - A total of 89 subjects were enrolled from four different countries: 27 from the United States, 20 Germany, 18 Netherlands, and 24 Israel. The main outcome measures used were the Medication Quantification Scale III and numerical analog pain scale.
RESULTS - There was no statistically significant correlation noted between the medication quantification scale and the visual analog scale for any site except for a moderate positive correlation at German sites. The medication quantification scale mean differences between the United States and Germany, the Netherlands, and Israel were 9.793 (P < 0.002), 10.389 (P < 0.001), and 4.984 (P = 0.303), respectively.
CONCLUSIONS - There appears to be only a weak correlation between amount of pain medication prescribed and patients' reported subjective pain intensity within this limited patient population. The Medication Quantification Scale is a viable tool for the analysis of pharmaceutical treatment of CRPS patients and would be useful in further prospective studies of pain medication prescription practices in the CRPS population worldwide.
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