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The Pain Experience of Hispanic Americans: A Critical Literature Review and Conceptual Model

Published:January 30, 2016DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpain.2015.10.022

      Highlights

      • Hispanic Americans (HAs) report less chronic pain than non-Hispanic White Americans.
      • HAs use stoicism and religious coping as well as cultural remedies for pain care.
      • HAs face access to pain care barriers and report negative attitudes toward opioids.
      • Clinicians identified language barriers as a key challenge when treating HAs' pain.
      • A proposed conceptual model highlights future areas of research.

      Abstract

      Although the Hispanic population is a burgeoning ethnic group in the United States, little is known about their pain-related experience. To address this gap, we critically reviewed the existing literature on pain experience and management among Hispanic Americans (HAs). We focused our review on the literature on nonmalignant pain, pain behaviors, and pain treatment seeking among HAs. Pain management experiences were examined from HA patients' and health care providers' perspectives. Our literature search included variations of the term “Hispanic” with “AND pain” in PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, ScienceDirect, and PsycINFO databases. A total of 117 studies met our inclusion criteria. We organized the results into a conceptual model with separate categories for biological and/or psychological and sociocultural and/or systems-level influences on HAs' pain experience, response to pain, and seeking and receiving pain care. We also included information on health care providers' experience of treating HA patients with pain. For each category, we identified future areas of research. We conclude with a discussion of limitations and clinical implications.

      Perspective

      In this critical review of the literature we examined the pain and management experiences of the HA population. We propose a conceptual model, which highlights findings from the existing literature and future areas of research.

      Key words

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