• Practitioners will encounter a large proportion of patients presenting with pain as their main presenting complaint regardless of the speciality. To ensure that a proper history is obtained from the patient the mnemonic "SOCRATES" can be used as a prompt.

    It can be used for various types of pain; cardiac, abdominal, muscular, headaches, and much more. The SOCRATES mnemonic can be broken down as detailed below:

    Site; where exactly is the pain?

    Onset; what were they doing when the pain started?

    Character; what does the pain feel like?

    Radiating; does the pain go anywhere else?

    Associated symptoms; e.g. nausea/vomiting?

    Time/duration; how long have they had the pain?

    Exacerbating/relieving factors; does anything make the pain better or worse?

    Severity; what is their pain score?

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