Curr Oncol Rep. 2022 Feb 22. doi: 10.1007/s11912-022-01245-9. Online ahead of print.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Despite recommended best practice guidelines, pain remains an ongoing but undertreated symptom in patients with cancer, many of whom require emergency department evaluation for acute oncologic pain. A significant proportion of these patients are hospitalized for pain management, which increases healthcare costs and exposes patients to the risks of hospitalization. We reviewed the literature on observation medicine: an emerging mode of healthcare delivery which can offer patients with acute pain access to a hospital's pain management solutions and specialists without an inpatient hospitalization. Specifically, we appraised the role of observation medicine in acute pain management and its financial implications in order to consider its potential impact on the management of acute oncologic pain.
RECENT FINDINGS: Recent evidence shows that observation medicine has the potential to decrease short-stay hospitalizations in cancer patients presenting with various concerns, including pain. Observation medicine is reported to be successful in providing comprehensive and cost-effective care for non-cancer patients with acute pain, making it a promising alternative to short-stay hospitalizations for cancer patients with acute oncologic pain.