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Journal of Korean Neurosurgical Society > Volume 45(5); 2009 > Article
Journal of Korean Neurosurgical Society 2009;45(5): 293-296.
doi: https://doi.org/10.3340/jkns.2009.45.5.293
Disability Evaluation of the Pain : The Present and Prospect in Korea.
Kyeong Seok Lee, Jai Joon Shim, Seok Mann Yoon, Jae Won Doh, Il Gyu Yun, Hack Gun Bae
Department of Neurosurgery, Soonchunhyang University Cheonan Hospital, Cheonan, Korea. ksleens@sch.ac.kr
ABSTRACT
OBJECTIVE:
Pain has long been regarded as a subjective symptom. Recently, however, some regard a type of intractable chronic pain as a disease. Furthermore, chronic persistent pain becomes a cause of permanent impairment (PI). In 6th edition, the American Medical Association (AMA) Guides has rated the pain as a PI. In Korea, pain has been already been rated as a PI. Here, we examined the present status and the prospect of disability evaluation for the pain in Korea.
METHODS:
Pain can be rated as a PI by the Workmen's Compensation Insurance Act (WCIA) and Patriots and Veterans Welfare Corporation Act (PVWCA) in Korea. We examined the definition, diagnostic criteria and grades of the pain related disability (PRD) in these two acts. We also examined legal judgments, which were made in 2005 for patients with severe pain. We also compared the acts and the judgments to the criteria of the 6th AMA Guides.
RESULTS:
The PRD can be rated as one of the 4 grades according to the WCIA. The provisions of the law do not limit the pain only for the complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS). The PRD can be rated as one of the 3 grades by the PVWCA. If there were objective signs such as osteoporosis, joint contracture and muscle atrophy corresponding to the CRPS, the grade is rated as 6. When the pain always interferes with one's job except easy work, the grade is rated as high as 5. In Korea, judicial precedents dealt the pain as a permanent disability in 2005.
CONCLUSION:
Although there were no objective criteria for evaluation of the PRD, pain has been already rated as a PI by the laws or judicial precedents, in Korea. Thus, we should regulate the Korean criteria of PRD like the AMA 6th edition. We also should develop the objective tools for evaluation of the PRD near in future.
Key Words: Pain; Disability evaluation; Treatment outcome; Craniocerebral trauma
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