eFit – HCP: Pain Management

Many older adults function well despite persistent pain, and the degree to which pain interferes with function is largely related to the individual’s burden of biopsychosocial comorbidities. (1)

Persistent pain is defined as pain that continues beyond the expected time of healing, or for at least three to six months. Medical, psychological and social comorbidities, as well as environmental factors, may contribute to pain and/or impact treatment response. Pain may contribute to homeostenosis (the progressive and gradual decline in physiological reserve with aging) and amplify frailty. (1)

Older adults may under-report the severity of pain because of misconceptions that pain is a normal part of aging, a tendency toward stoicism or fears of addiction. The coexistence of sensory (vision and/or hearing deficits) and/or cognitive impairment also may make the evaluation of pain more challenging in the older patient.


Faces Pain Scale:
Link (Instructions included)

McGill Pain Questionnaire:
Instructions    eForm    Print Form

Numeric Pain Rating Scale:
Link (Instructions included)

Visual Analogue Pain Scale:
Link (Instructions Included)

Opioid Prescribing for Acute Pain: Care for People 15 Years of Age and Older (Health Quality Ontario):
Quality Standards
Health Quality Ontario Opioid Prescribing for Chronic Pain: Care for People 15 Years of Age and Older (Health Quality Ontario):
Quality Standards

Reading List: Pain in Older Adults

View the CSAH Lesson on Pain Management

View CSAH Courses for HCP: Caring for the Older Adult

This series of courses provides a foundation for understanding, recognizing, assessing and managing health care concerns in the older adult.  Each Lesson includes short narrated modules that focus on these four themes.

View HCP Continuous Learning

We share aging-related courses and archived content offered by other leaders in the field of geriatric care.