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Original Research

Open Access

Reduced pain intensity at the first dressing improves postoperative pain control after anorectal surgery

  • Huixiang Li1,2
  • Hongpan Gong2
  • Yuxiao Fang3
  • Hanlin Gong3,*,

1West China School of Nursing, Sichuan University, 610041 Chengdu, Sichuan, China

2School of Basic Medical Sciences, North Sichuan Medical College, 637100 Nanchong, Sichuan, China

3Department of Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, 610041 Chengdu, Sichuan, China

DOI: 10.22514/sv.2023.018 Vol.19,Issue 2,March 2023 pp.123-129

Submitted: 09 October 2022 Accepted: 09 November 2022

Published: 08 March 2023

*Corresponding Author(s): Hanlin Gong E-mail:


This study aimed to investigate the effects of first dressing changes on the postoperative pain intensity and the duration of pain in patients after anorectal surgeries to provide evidence for improving postoperative pain control. A total of 164 patients with an anorectal disease scheduled to undergo surgery were enrolled in this study, and their postoperative pain levels and duration were recorded. The status of severe pain for a rating score ≥7 during hospitalization after surgery was considered as the study endpoint. The pain score at the first dressing change was recorded and considered a potential risk factor for predicting severe pain during hospitalization by logistic regression analysis. Comparisons of postoperative pain outcomes between patients with a pain rating score ≥7 or <7 were performed before and after propensity score matching. Severe pain (rating score ≥7) at the first dressing change was an independent risk factor for severe pain during hospitalization (odds ratio (OR) = 8.33, p < 0.001). Pain on the first night after surgery in the Severe group was higher than in the Non-Severe group (3.2 ± 0.9 vs. 2.8 ± 1.0, p = 0.006). Patients in the Severe group had higher pain number rating scale (NRS) scores at the second (5.2 ± 1.3 vs. 3.1 ± 1.2, p < 0.001) and third (3.5± 1.5 vs. 1.9 ± 0.9, p < 0.001) dressing change than those in the Non-Severe group. Moreover, the overall NRS pain score during hospitalization in the Severe group was significantly higher than the Non-Severe group (5.7 ± 1.1 vs. 3.9 ± 1.5, p < 0.001), and the incidence of severe postoperative pain during hospitalization was also higher (61.6% vs. 12.1%, p < 0.001). In addition, pain duration in the Severe group was significantly longer than in the Non-Severe group (10 (3, 18) vs. 5 (2, 10), p < 0.001). Regarding the distributions of propensity scores, the overall NRS pain score during hospitalization in the Severe group was significantly higher than in the Non-Severe group (5.7 ± 1.1 vs. 3.8 ± 1.4, p < 0.001), as well as a higher incidence in severe postoperative pain (61.2% vs. 7.5%, p < 0.001), which was accompanied by a significantly longer pain duration in the Severe group (10 (3, 18) vs. 5 (2, 10), p < 0.001). Moreover, subgroup analysis showed that patients in the Severe group had higher overall pain NRS scores than the Non-Severe group for both the Milligan-Morgan (5.6 ± 1.5 vs. 4.0 ± 1.1, p < 0.001) and Thread-ligating (5.8 ± 1.4 vs. 3.9 ± 1.0, p < 0.001) surgery groups. Pain intensity at the first dressing change was sociated with the intensity and duration of postoperative pain in patients who underwent anorectal surgery. Thus, proper actions are needed to relieve the pain intensity at the first dressing change.


Anorectal diseases; Postoperative pain; First dressing change; Degree of pain

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Huixiang Li,Hongpan Gong,Yuxiao Fang,Hanlin Gong. Reduced pain intensity at the first dressing improves postoperative pain control after anorectal surgery. Signa Vitae. 2023. 19(2);123-129.


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