Academy of Chiropractic Personal Injury & Primary Spine Care Program

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From the Desk of Dr. Mark Studin
Academy of Chiropractic
Preamble: many of these issues are small, yet each issue is just that… an issue. If you take care of the small issues, then the larger issues often take care of themselves and you can focus on the larger issues… a larger, more profitable practice and more family time.

“Explaining Pain Scales”

“How does it work?” Mark Studin 2017


In recording a module with my legal scholar on testifying, pain scales were discussed. It is a very common practice to ask an expert witness “were pain scales documented?” AND.. the very next questions is “did you explain to your pateint what pain scales are and what they mean in reporting that to you?“

The real question they are getting at; have you explained to your patient the difference between a 1 and a 10? What does an 8 constitute?

First, a visual analog scale is just that… visual. Are you showing your patients a picture? I strongly urge you to post a picture on the wall in your examinig room, such as the one below so you can refer to it. Short of having a picture you are doing a verbal analog scale and that is not as good as a visual according to the lawyers. 

Pain scales must be explained so that the patient fully understands. 




Adjunct Associate Professor of Chiropractic, University of Bridgeport, College of Chiropractic
Adjunct Post Graduate Faculty, Cleveland University-Kansas City, College of Chiropractic
Adjunct Professor, Division of Clinical Sciences, Texas Chiropractic College
Educational Presenter, Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education Joint Partnership with the State University of New York at Buffalo, School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

Academy of Chiropractic
US Chiropractic Directory
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