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Back Pain Rating Tool - Recording Intensity of Back Pain with the Visual Analog

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Updated March 23, 2007

Back Pain Rating Tool - Recording Intensity of Back Pain with the Visual Analog Scale or VAS

The Visual Analog Scale is used to help patients record and communicate the intensity of their back pain symptoms and their neck pain symptoms.

The Visual Analog Scale, or VAS, helps patients communicate how much back pain or neck pain they are experiencing. To use the Visual Analog Scale, make a mark that represents the intensity of your back pain symptoms as they are between no pain and unbearable pain. Doctors then measure the distance between the "No Pain" point and the point where you made your mark to come up with a score that expresses back pain intensity.

Source:

Gould, H.J. III, M.D., Ph.D. (2007). Understanding Pain. Saint Paul, MN: Demos.

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