A Pain Diary is used to monitor pain over time, collect data on possible pain triggers and provide information for a healthcare provider to make best treatment decisions. It is often said that you are the most important person in the pain management process. If you are able to self-report, you should provide information for the Pain Diary.,   However, if you are unable to share information about your pain experience or maintain a Pain Diary this important task is often assumed by your caregiver.

  • Why to complete a Pain Diary
    • Primary Care Provider (PCP) or Specialist has asked you to track pain
    • Provides a written history of pain issues that can be shared with the healthcare provider and can support better treatment decisions
  • When to complete a Pain Diary
    • On a routine basis to track pain, preferably daily
    • For additional acute pain episodes as they occur
  • What to track on a Pain Diary
    • Date/Time
    • Location of Pain
    • Intensity of Pain
    • Impact of pain on function
    • Aggravating factors (what were you doing when pain started/increased?)
    • Treatments tried and their effect on pain
    • Other problems or side effects

pain diary example







PDF iconFAST FACTS - Patients: Using a Pain Diary - PDF Version