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guides & guidelines

American Society of Hematology 2020 Guidelines for Sickle Cell Disease: Management of Acute and Chronic Pain

key information

source: Blood Advances

year: 2020

authors: Amanda M. Brandow, C. Patrick Carroll, Susan Creary, Ronisha Edwards-Elliott, Jeffrey Glassberg, Robert W. Hurley, Abdullah Kutlar, Mohamed Seisa, Jennifer Stinson, John J. Strouse, Fouza Yusuf, William Zempsky, Eddy Lang


These evidence-based guidelines developed by the American Society of Hematology (ASH) are intended to support patients, clinicians, and other health care professionals in pain management decisions for children and adults with SCD.

ASH formed a multidisciplinary panel, including 2 patient representatives, that was thoroughly vetted to minimize bias from conflicts of interest. The Mayo Evidence-Based Practice Research Program supported the guideline development process, including updating or performing systematic reviews. Clinical questions and outcomes were prioritized according to importance for clinicians and patients. The Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach was used, including GRADE evidence-to-decision frameworks, to assess evidence and make recommendations, which were subject to public comment.

The panel reached consensus on 18 recommendations specific to acute and chronic pain. The recommendations reflect a broad pain management approach, encompassing pharmacological and nonpharmacological interventions and analgesic delivery.

Because of low-certainty evidence and closely balanced benefits and harms, most recommendations are conditional. Patient preferences should drive clinical decisions. Policymaking, including that by payers, will require substantial debate and input from stakeholders. Randomized controlled trials and comparative-effectiveness studies are needed for chronic opioid therapy, nonopioid therapies, and nonpharmacological interventions.

organization: Medical College of Wisconsin, USA; Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, USA; Nationwide Children's Hospital, USA; University of Illinois at Chicago, USA; Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, USA; Wake Forest School of Medicine, USA; Augusta University, USA; Mayo Clinic, USA; University of Toronto, Canada; Duke University School of Medicine, USA; University of Connecticut School of Medicine, USA; University of Calgary, Canada

DOI: 10.1182/bloodadvances.2020001851

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