[Pain complaints among inhabitants of Lübeck: results of a population-based epidemiologic study.].

Schmerz (Berlin, Germany)

PubMedID: 18415173

Kohlmann T. [Pain complaints among inhabitants of Lübeck: results of a population-based epidemiologic study.]. Schmerz. 1991;5(4):208-13.
The paper reports the results of a population-based pain survey in Lübeck, a city of 210,000 inhabitants in the northern part of Germany. Data were collected from 308 respondents (systematic sample aged 26-75 years) by mailed questionnaires (response rate: 80%). Subjects indicated on a list of 11 pain conditions whether they suffered from these kinds of painever, during the past 6 months, or "today". The prevalence of the 11 pain conditions ranged from 19% to 70% (lifetime prevalence), 14% to 56% (6-month prevalence), and 4% to 29% (point prevalence). Rheumatic pain (e.g., back pain) prevailed; higher prevalence figures were found for females for several pain conditions. Respondents who suffered from pain "today" (n=157) or during the preceding 6 months (n=255) often reported two or more kinds of pain. Ten percent of the respondents reported that they had never experienced any of the 11 pain conditions, 17% did so with respect to the past 6 months, and 49% were free of pain on the day they completed the questionnaire. The classification of pain sufferers according to the number of disability days in the past 6 months showed that three-quarters of them reported 0-6 disability days. However, 8% of the total sample reported more than 14 pain-related disability days and were classified as being affected by pain to a sociomedically relevant degree. Approximately half of the subjects who reported pain in the past 6 months did not consult a physician. This proportion decreased considerably in subgroups with more than 6 disability days.