Needle pain during routine vaccinations in preschoolers, in relation to pain and symptoms in everyday life.

symptom perception early life experiences population cohort study

Prof. dr. J.G.M. Rosmalen
Michel J. van Vliet
drs. S. van der Ziel

Type of project:
Pilot project (year 2 or 3) of Stage Wetenschap / Researchproject

Nature of the research:
Observational research in children, combined with longitudinal data from a population cohort.

Fields of study:
pediatrics Sociale Psychiatrie

Background / introduction
Early life experiences may play a large role in dealing with pain and disease later in life. In this research we investigate these early life experiences with pain and physical symptoms within families. Some families may be more prone to symptoms than others based on different biological, psychological and social factors. This biopsychosocial model is used to gain a better understanding in symptom experiences in early life. Considering the different factors from this model, this research is conducted in a multi-generational population cohort. This cohort, TRAILS/TRAILS next is based in the North of the Netherlands. Children in TRAILS next have been followed from birth, and data includes video observations, questionnaires, interviews, et cetera. At age 4 the participants are filmed during routine vaccinations in their public health clinic. A few months later data is collected on their symptoms, using parents, teachers and the children themselves as informants. In this study we will compare video data from routine vaccinations at age 4 with data on general symptoms and health, to gain better insight in the relation between background, family, general health and reaction to the vaccination.
Research question / problem definition
How does the reaction to acute pain relate to the child’s background and general health?
Within the TRAILS next cohort, children receiving their routine vaccination at age 4 are video recorded. At present, 80 participants have been included, but the data collection will continue the upcoming months/years. During the research project/internship, the student can participate in the data collection. Furthermore, the videos will be coded and analyzed. As data collection happens in a multi-generational cohort, a lot of background information is available to relate the coded material to. The student will be coached to formulate a relevant research question for writing a thesis. Co-authorship on a scientific publication is optional.
- Hartman CA, Richards JS, Vrijen C, Oldehinkel AJ, Oerlemans AM, Kretschmer T. Cohort Profile Update: The TRacking Adolescents' Individual Lives Survey-The Next Generation (TRAILS NEXT). Int J Epidemiol. 2022 Oct 13;51(5):e267-e275. doi: 10.1093/ije/dyac066. PMID: 35462400; PMCID: PMC9557833.
- Waxman JA, DiLorenzo MG, Pillai Riddell RR, Flora DB, Greenberg S, Garfield H. Preschool Needle Pain Responding: Establishing 'Normal'. J Pain. 2017 Jun;18(6):739-745. doi: 10.1016/j.jpain.2017.01.010. Epub 2017 Feb 11. PMID: 28196739.
- Crellin DJ, Harrison D, Santamaria N, Babl FE. Systematic review of the face, legs, activity, cry and consolability scale for assessing pain in infants and children: Is it reliable, valid, and feasible for use? Pain. 2015;156(11):2132-2151.
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