Inland Medical Evaluations

Numbers and words: describing pain

When we talk about pain, we are talking about something very personal and specific to each patient. Physicians often try to get a sense of how much pain you feel as a patient by asking you to rate on a scale of one through ten. At the same time, you may hear the phrase "pain is subjective" meaning that pain from the same low back injury can feel like a five to one person and a nine to another. 

While using a number scale can be a helpful place to start, the tips at the end of this recent article will help get you thinking about how to describe pain in a way that relates to your experience and your day-to-day activities. We hope these tips help you in your next conversation about pain.

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/07/23/626202281/words-matter-when-talking-about-pain-with-your-doctor


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