Revista de la Sociedad Española del Dolor
versión impresa ISSN 1134-8046
Objective: To describe and analyze the epidemiological, clinical and quality of life features of patients with non-neuropathic non-malignant chronic pain recruited for the ITACA study (Impact of Analgesic Treatment on Quality of Life in Algias) in which 100 Pain Units of our country participated. Material and methods: The ITACA study was a prospective, observational, multicentric pharmacoepidemiological study performed during the first half of 2001. Data from the study population were obtained during the first recruitment visit. Results: The study included 907 patients, 66.03% women and 33.97% men, with an average age of 57.43 ± 11.34 years. Forty-eight per cent of patients had an age ranging from 55 to 70 years; 92.56% lived with their family and 74.44% lived in an urban setting; 42.37% had overweight and 28,99%, obesity. The cause of chronic pain was, in order of frequency: lumbalgia (52.92%), followed by osteroarthritis (33.96%) and arthrosis (30.65%). The nociceptive process had lasted for 5.32 ± 6.31 years. Seventy-nine per cent of the study population had some kind of restriction of their physical activity. Concomitant drugs were administered to 78.84% of the patients for the management of pain and 69.6% followed other drug regimes due to processes other than pain. Conditions associated with most severe pain were ar-throsis, osteoporosis with vertebral crushing and osteoarthritis. Severe pain was associated with female gender, poor sleep quality and more than 70 years of age. Slighter pain was associated with male gender, less than 55 years of age and lumbalgia, visceral and ischemic pain. Conclusions: Overall, the results of the ITACA study population suggest that most patients were women, with an average age ranging from 55 to 70 years, with chronic pain whose origin was degenerative or inflammatory, with an average evolution of 5.32±6.31 years, living with their family in urban areas and with overweight. A direct relationship was found between pain severity and degree of impact on the quality of life of the patients. Impact was greatest on the physical score versus the mental score of the quality of life of the study population. The negative indicators of physical health were arthrosis and pain severity, whereas the positive indicators were visceral pain and small restriction of the physical activity. The variables that had a negative influence on the mental dimension of the quality of life were female gender, low education level and activity restriction.
Palabras clave : Epidemiology of chronic pain; Quality of life and chronic pain; Spanish population; Tramadol.