ABSTRACT: Acute pain in undergraduate medical education: an unfinished chapter!
Inadequately treated acute pain is a global healthcare problem that causes significant patient suffering and disability, risk of chronicity, increased resource utilization, and escalating healthcare costs. Compounding the problem is the lack of adequate instruction in acute pain management available in medical schools worldwide. Incorporating acute pain diagnosis and management as an integral part of the medical school curriculum will allow physicians to develop a more comprehensive, compassionate approach to treating patients with acute pain syndromes and should be considered a healthcare imperative. In this article, we review the current status of pain education in educational institutions across the world, focusing on achievements, lacunae, and inadequacies. We appeal to all concerned–pain management specialists, health educators, and policymakers–to consider incorporating education on acute pain and its management at undergraduate medical levels in an integrated manner.