The outpatient Chronic Pain Clinic, affiliated with our Rehabilitation Medicine division, offers an interdisciplinary approach to treating children and adolescents.
Among the conditions treated are:
- Complex regional pain syndrome
- Neuropathic pain
- Back pain
- Abdominal pain
The goals of the treatment program are to help patients:
- Deal with pain more effectively
- Maintain function
- Stay in school or return to school
- Improve their quality of life
Emphasis on the Mind-Body Connection
The initial evaluation is completed with a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician and a pain psychologist. The purpose of the evaluation is to assess the physical, cognitive, emotional, behavioral and environmental factors impacting each patient’s current pain and level of functioning. During the initial visit the patient, family and team will discuss whether the program is the right fit.
The Pain Program Model
If the program is a good fit for the patient, they will attend eight to 10 behavioral health visits with the psychologist. Goals of the program include learning pain coping strategies, increasing awareness of the mind-body connection and improving overall functioning.
We may also refer the patient to physical or occupational therapy and communicate with this provider as part of the program.
The team meets weekly to discuss patient progress and frequency of follow-up medical visits will be determined by the physician and psychologist. Generally, each patient has one to two medical follow-up appointments during the program.
Occasionally, there are medications that can be helpful, but medications are not routinely prescribed. No opiate medications are prescribed. The goal of the program is to focus on function.
Once the authorization goes through for a pain program referral, the chart is reviewed and the family is contacted to fill out a questionnaire. When this questionnaire has been returned, the family will be contacted to schedule an appointment for the initial evaluation.