I followed a similar path down here in S. Devon. There is an established medical pathway starting with a drug regime that starts usually with amitriptyline and proceeds, if you haven’t found relief, onto ‘stronger’ drugs. I have written about my experience in the thread “Lyrica”.
I was initially treated at the Pain clinic in Exeter and was then transferred to Torbay PC when we moved into a different district. The consultant there eventually referred me to the Pain Clinic in Bristol at Frenchay Hospital. I received world-class treatment at their hands and I remain a patient now that the clinic has moved to Southmead hospital.
I received a DBS implant about 8 years ago, at Frenchay, which has helped me a great deal.
Now here comes the downer. Whatever treatment is carried out has to be paid for by the Trust that administers your home region. In my case the total cost was around £150k(!!) and I was fortunate that the local Trust was prepared to foot the bill. It took two attempts though, fortunately, I didn’t have to be involved in the procedure.
I agree that pain is a little understood topic as far as GPs are concerned. Whether the pathway I mentioned will ever change is perhaps unlikely, and if an area is underfunded then your GP may be reluctant to refer a person onwards. It is necessary to insist, politely but firmly, to get a referral to a PC – though it’s a daunting task when one is consumed by pain.