Pain Management - A Closed Claim Analysis Looking at Risks and Lessons Learned


For the first time, The Doctors Company has published an analysis of lawsuits and claims filed against pain management physicians. This study completed in 2020 provides quantitative and qualitative information that a physician who practices pain management, including interventional approaches to treatment would find useful in mitigating the risks of unintended outcomes or harms. This study breaks down where most patient injuries occur, what those injuries are, and the lessons learned from those claims.

Course ID #: TDE 210844.0 Issue Date: 4/26/2021 Expiration Date: 4/26/2024


After completing this activity, learners will be able to:

  • Break down the major patient injures alleged in claims or lawsuits filed against pain management physicians.
  • Identify the anatomical area that was most involved in the pain management closed claim study.
  • Implement one or more strategies to reduce risks and improve patient safety when providing controlled substances and prescriptive medications.
  • Apply four items included in a “time-out” checklist that can safeguard a patient’s outcome.
  • Appraise the best practices for pain management when providing informed consent to patents for invasive procedures.


No individual in a position to control or influence the content of this activity has reported relevant financial relationships with commercial interests. No commercial support was provided for this activity.


The information and guidelines contained in this activity are generalized and may not apply to all practice situations. We recommend that legal advice be obtained from a qualified attorney for specific application to your practice. The information is intended for educational purposes and should be used as a reference guide only.

Course Developers

Michelle Swift, Rn, JD, CPHRM, CPPS, Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager, Department of Patient Safety and Risk Management, The Doctors Company

Jennifer Bolen, JD, Compliance Consultant. 

Johanna Lackner, MPH, MSW, Senior Director, Continuing Professional Development, Department of Patient Safety and Risk Management, The Doctors Company

Continuing Education Credit

The Doctors Company is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical educational activities for physicians.

The Doctors Company designates this activity for a maximum of 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Complies with State Requirements

Please SEE the Federation of State Medical Boards overview of Continuing Medical Education requirements by State. 

Technical Requirements

The activity is best experienced using the most current browser: Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or Microsoft Edge. Internet Explorer is not supported on this platform. All activities featuring audio must have a speaker. To view graphic images and references that appear in separate "pop-up" windows, JavaScript and session cookies must be enabled on your computer. Adobe Acrobat Reader may be required for certain activities.

Contact Us

If you have questions, contact or call 800.421.2368.


Visit our Resource document for this program.