Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Nursing (M.S.N.)

Degree Program

College of Nursing

First Advisor

Andrea C. Bostrom

Second Advisor

Joyce French

Third Advisor

Thomas Herzog


The purpose of this study was to validate the Neonatal Infant Pain Scale (NIPS). This was accomplished by determining inter-rater reliability, the ability to measure pain in infants of any gestational age, and the relationship between the NIPS behavioral scores and physiological parameters of heart rate, respiratory rate and oxygen saturation.; Inter-rater reliability on total scores obtained before, during and after the procedure yielded correlations ranging from 0.69 to 0.90, which were significant at p {dollar}<{dollar}.001. All groups showed significant increases in NIPS scores after a painful procedure was started. Total mean scores before, during and after a procedure were 0.44, 3.04 and 0.6 respectively. There were no significant correlations between NIPS scores and heart rate, respiratory rate or oxygen saturation.; The NIPS appears to be a reliable tool for evaluating pain in neonates of any gestational age. Physiological measures were not reliable indicators of pain in neonates.


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