Historia del concepto de dolor total y reflexiones sobre la humanización de la atención a pacientes terminales. History of the Concept of Total Pain and Reflections on Humanization of Assistance for Terminal Patients

Silvia Rivera-Largacha, Juan Rafaél López-Sánchez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In this paper we study the concept of total pain to open a reflection on the theoretical and practical contributions that this category can offer in terminal patients care, emphasizing in the need of humanize the attention, as a way to restore the quality of life and the dignity of the patients, their families, their friends and as way to dignify and improve the quality and the work conditions of the clinical professionals who keep company to these patients in their transit to death. Development: Through this paper we analyze the historical and epistemological process from which arises the term total pain as a category that provides theoretical tools that allow direct diagnosis and the therapeutic approach of pain in the particular conditions of the terminal illness. Conclusions: The concept of total pain allows to understand the process of end of life as an experience of disease, a condition (illness) and a social dysfunction (sickness) which involves different forms of suffering that may need to be treated in a holistic manner. Holistic care means that the health care professional should focus more on the patient, and not on its pathology, offering a better quality of life, and support in the process of dying.
Original languageSpanish (Colombia)
Article number2
Pages (from-to)340-356
Number of pages16
JournalRevista Ciencias de la Salud
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2018
EventCongreso internacional de anestesiología:: tendencias actuales en el manejo del dolor agudo perioperatorio y uso de ultrasonido en salas de cirugía - Bogotá, Colombia
Duration: Nov 11 2016Nov 12 2016
Conference number: N/A

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Anthropology

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