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Software detects children in pain
San Diego Union-Tribune

A new method of accurately and quickly determining when hospitalized children are in pain has been reported by UC San Diego researchers.

The researchers adapted software developed to interpret facial expressions to determine pain level. The software scored video recordings of the faces of children from 5 to 18 years old, who had had laparoscopic appendectomies at Rady Children’s Hospital – San Diego. The scores were then compared to the children’s own assessment of pain, as well as pain ratings by parents and nurses.

Software assessment detected the presence or absence of pain as well as nurses did by direct observation, but not as well as parents, the study said. It worked as well as parents in measuring pain severity.