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Organization of Guidelines

  To derive maximum benefit, clinicians should read the entire guideline. However, the guideline is organized so that users can go easily to those sections of immediate interest. Following a discussion of why clinicians should take an aggressive approach to prevention and control of postoperative pain, methods of pain assessment are described. Pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic methods of pain control are then presented for general control of postoperative pain, followed by discussion of pain control for specific operative sites and for specific types of patients. The final section discusses institutional responsibility for effective pain management. The appendixes contain a brief description of the methods used for scientific review and a table of scientific evidence for pain intervention, pain assessment tools, drug dosage tables for adults and children, and relaxation exercises.