Patient-Reported Outcomes | PainSolve
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Patient-Reported
Outcomes

Pain is complex and difficult to measure

To evaluate the benefits of new pain treatments, we need to be able to accurately measure pain. There is no simple scan or blood test that we can use to do this; we are reliant on patient-reported outcome measures (PROs).

Current PRO reality

PROs normally come in the form of a questionnaire, scale or diary that patients use to report on the status of their health condition. However, many of the current PROs used for pain are too simple – the most commonly accepted scales by regulatory authorities are the visual analogue scale or numeric rating scale, where patients are asked to rate their ‘usual level of pain on a scale of 0–10’. They do not measure other aspects such as pain quality or impact on quality of life and are limited by factors such as recall bias.

0-10 Numeric Pain Rating Scale

  • Understanding the unmet need for novel PRO tools in vulvodynia
    Vulvodynia is a highly prevalent condition of the vulva leading to painful sex and chronic pelvic pain. Current PROs specific to vaginal and vulval health focus primarily on sexual quality of life with little focus on pain, lacking granular questioning on patient pain. There is an unmet need for a new instrument that includes quality of life measures and the impact of pain on patient outcomes, such as the ability to use tampons or wear tight trousers.

"Pain limits, isolates, and slows down lives; a 0–10 scale does not apply"

Future PRO reality

We want to change the current PRO reality. As innovators, we are committed to improving the health environment beyond developing new drugs and devices. In partnership with patients and experts, we are developing novel disease-specific PROs and new ways to assess functional outcomes.

  • Development of a fit-for-purpose PRO in chronic low back pain
    Chronic low back pain is an extremely common disorder that is associated with long-term pain and disability. Grünenthal recognised that PRO instruments measuring its impact on patients would often present pain as a single overall concept, which may not fully capture the pain sensations of this condition. We therefore used this unmet need as an opportunity to develop the Patient Assessment for Low Back Pain–Symptoms (PAL-S), a PRO assessment tool designed to specifically reflect the pain sensations experienced by patients with chronic low back pain. Read more about the mixed-methods development of this tool here.

Latest Updates

The Neurobiology of the Placebo Effect – The 1st PainSolve Webinar

We are delighted to have had Prof. Ulrike Bingel (University Hospital Essen, Germany) host our inaugural PainSolve webinar on the 12th December 2018, titled, ‘Psychological and Neurobiological Mechanisms of Placebo and Nocebo Responses.’

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How can the patient experience inform your research?

Chronic pain affects every aspect of patients’ lives. However, the experience of pain is unique to the individual, which is why effective treatment is challenging. This article summarises a patient-centric approach to research that harnesses patient insights to inform the development of new strategies with the potential for greater impact on the lives of those with chronic pain.

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Diagnostic Challenges of Small Fibre Neuropathy

In this article Prof. Páll Karlsson (Aarhus University) highlights the need for a gold standard in the diagnosis of small fibre neuropathy (SFN). Prof. Karlsson focuses on the heterogeneity of SFN as a potential cause of this unmet need, by comparing different characteristics of the disease and those of similar diseases.

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Diagnostic Challenges of Small Fibre Neuropathy

In this article Prof. Páll Karlsson (Aarhus University) highlights the need for a gold standard in the diagnosis of small fibre neuropathy (SFN). Prof. Karlsson focuses on the heterogeneity of SFN as a potential cause of this unmet need, by comparing different characteristics of the disease and those of similar diseases.

... Discover more
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