Effectiveness of Cold Alcohol Scrub on Pain Associated with Arterial Blood gas Analysis
Journal of the Korean Society of Emergency Medicine (대한응급의학회지)
Journal of the Korean Society of Emergency Medicine (대한응급의학회지), Vol.24(1) : 63~69, 2013
Purpose: Patients undergoing arterial puncture experience significant pain and discomfort. Cryoanalgesic pretreatment using vapocoolant spray and a cold alcohol swap stick can be easily and rapidly applied before arterial puncture. The purpose of this study was to compare the efficacy of vapocoolant spray and a cold alcohol swab stick for control of pain associated with arterial blood gas analysis. Methods: We conducted a non-blinded, randomized controlled trial in which adult patients underwent an arterial puncture after pretreatment with different analgesics. Enrolled patients were randomized to one of three treatment groups: 1) vapocoolant spray; 2) cold alcohol swap stick; or 3) alcohol swap stick stored at room temperature (control). We assessed the patient`s pain after the arterial puncture using a 100-mm visual analogue scale. The difficulty associated with the arterial puncture and the likelihood of successful puncture was assessed using time to successful sampling and the number of attempts required for successful sampling. Time to successful sampling and the number of attempts required for successful sampling were used for assessment of the difficulty associated with the arterial puncture and the likelihood of successful puncture. Results: A total of 101 patients were enrolled in this study. The mean scores for pain after the arterial puncture were 41.2±11.7 mm for patients treated with vapocoolant spray, 35.9±8.6 mm for patients treated with a cold alcohol swap stick, and 66.2±8.5 mm for the control group (p<0.001). The time to successful sampling was less consumed and the number of attempts was significantly lower in the treatment groups, compared with the control group (p=0.002 and p=0.008, respectively). Conclusion: We conclude that pretreatment using a cold alcohol swap stick as well as vapocoolant spray resulted in a decrease in patients`perception of pain associated with arterial puncture and facilitated the arterial puncture.