Document Type

DNP Project


School of Nursing

Date of Degree

Spring 2018


Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Primary Advisor

Dr. Karen J. Whitt, PhD, AGN-BC, FNP-C; Dr. Laurie Posey, EdD


Background. Advances in technology and communication tools offer new, innovative methodologies for delivering information to patients. Research is needed to understand the clinical effectiveness of different education delivery methods on outcomes and comprehension.

Purpose. Compare the effects of digital education with conventional, written and verbal instructions on patients’ pain outcomes, knowledge attainment, and treatment participation.

Methods. A quasi-experimental design evaluated outcomes in 133 patients undergoing major hip (n=73) and knee (n=60) arthroplasty who received point-of-care pain education delivered via a dynamic mobile-computing (iPad) platform (n=65) or by conventional education (n=68). The significance level was set at 0.05. Person’s r and independent t-tests were calculated to evaluate the pre-post intervention pain knowledge scores and post-intervention pain outcomes.

Results. Following point-of-care education, all patients, regardless of delivery methodology demonstrated improvements in pain knowledge (p<.001). Overall, patient education demonstrated positive correlations between time spent and the number of education interactions (r=.365; p<.000) and the pain experience (r=.211; p= .015). Patients who received the digital education program spent significantly more time engaged in education (p=.009) yet required less provider directed education (p=.003). There were no significant differences in post-intervention pain knowledge, outcomes (p=.501), treatment participation (p=.806), and opioid requirements (p=.366) between groups.

Conclusions. Dynamic digital programs for self-directed, modular education at the point-of-care are equally as effective as conventional education in maintaining high quality education to achieve knowledge acquisition and positive pain outcomes. A digital education platform is a viable learning methodology that can be used to deliver effective patient education for pain management.

Open Access




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