Fear-of-pain is a common feeling of patients and their family who experience or witness severe or chronic pain. Fear-of-pain may disturb patient’s recovery, and also influence family support to assist patients’ recovery.
This study is to measure the level of family support for each patient; evaluate the extent of the supporting families’ fear-of-pain; and identify possible interventions in family support and family fear-of-pain.
This cross-sectional descriptive research involved 77 participants in the orthopedics department of a tertiary hospital by convenience sampling. The online questionnaire includes general information, and scales of fear-of-pain, pain anxiety, pain vigilance and awareness, pain catastrophizing, and family support. T-test, Pearson correlation analysis and Spearman correlation analysis were used to analyze data.
Most participants reported that they experienced a moderate-to-high level of fear-of-pain, pain anxiety, pain vigilance and awareness. A total of 15.6% of participants are at risk of pain catastrophizing. The family’s pain vigilance and awareness, and fear-of-pain were often similar to those of the patient, and their levels of pain anxiety and catastrophizing were often higher than the patient’s. Family support and families’ fear-of-pain affect patients’ feelings of pain and families’ behavior in decision-making for patient recovery, necessitating the development of interventions for patients’ families.
Family members can develop the fear-of-pain from witnessing painful experiences and may exhibit fear-avoidance behaviors in deciding on patients’ rehabilitation plan. Family support, including the type of relationship with families, and length of time family spent with the patient, had an effect on patients’ pain and fear-of-pain.

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