What is pain?
How is pain produced?
How can pain be assessed?
How is pain relieved?
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Table of contents
CD Purchase

Physiological Responses
Biochemical Parameters

How can Pain be Assessed?

Principles of Assessment Objective Assessment Behaviour Subjective Assessment Systematic Assessment

Objective Assessment of Pain

Measurements of physiological, biochemical and behavioural responses, including responses of the animal to standard tests such as:

  • quantitatively controlled noxious and non-noxious stimulation of the skin e.g. threshold testing 
  • the animal's behavioural response to a visual or auditory stimulus

Physiological responses generally reflect changes in the SA and HPA systems and include remote monitoring of changes in heart and respiration rate, blood pressure and stress hormone values e.g. plasma or salivary cortisol.

Biochemical changes in body fluids  e.g. blood glucose, acute phase proteins and muscle enzyme activity.

Behavioural responses include precise measurements of the occurrence of well-defined activities and postures.

Scottish Blackface ewe & lamb and Blonde D'Aquitaine cows and calf        

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                                            Revised: 20-10-08