J Anesth. 2017 Mar 27. doi: 10.1007/s00540-017-2339-x. [Epub ahead of print]
Chronic post-surgical pain (CPSP) is currently an inevitable surgical complication. Despite the advances in surgical techniques and the development of new modalities for pain management, CPSP can affect 15-60% of all surgical patients. The development of chronic pain represents a burden to both the patient and to the community. In order to have a meaningful impact on this debilitating condition it is essential to identify those at risk. Early identification of patients at risk will help to reduce the percentage of patients who go on to develop CPSP. Unfortunately, evidence about any effective actions to reduce this condition is limited. This review will focus on providing context to the challenging problem of CPSP. The possible role of both the surgeon and anesthesiologist in reducing the incidence of this problem will be explored.