What options can pain management clinics offer?

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    I have osteoarthritis in my spine and many joints – I’m waiting for my second trapeziectomy – bursitis in both hips and fibromyalgia. I’m managing (just) with codeine and paracetamol as I would prefer not to go down the opioid drug route. A rheumatologist I saw a few years ago suggested it might be a good idea to get my GP to refer me to a pain management clinic.

    Does anyone have recent experience of these and could tell me what happened, please? As I said, I definitely don’t want to be drugged up so wondered what other options pain management clinics could offer.

    Thanks in advance.



    I pain clinic is a specialised center that has a much broader experience of pain management than just a regular GP.
    They can offer specialist treatments, such as Lidocane infusions, Patches, And medications that typically a GP cannot prescribe.

    They will also have access to support groups for things like Mindfulness which can help in some situations.
    Some large pain clinics can also offer SCS ( Spinal cord stimulation ).

    Also dont totally dismiss Opiod type drugs. The newest one which came out in 2012 is “Tapentadol”, and is really effective and does not have the side effects of Morphine, or Tramadol.

    If you are suffering, and the GP is not helping then its definitely worth asking to refer to your local Pain Management center.

    Keep us up to date with your progress, as talking to others in the same situation also really helps !. You are not alone…



    Thank you very much Paul for your helpful response. I didn’t realise that pain clinics would offer such a wide range of treatments and, from what you’ve said, it certainly seems as though it would be worthwhile. I’ll be discussing it with my GP.



    Hi Genevieve

    A lot of us have been through a pain management clinic – and they also do do courses – so you might find this old link on here helpful, basically it covers a lot of information on the pain relief section on this site –

    Pain management programme

    I must admit my clinic offered opiods, and I did have injections one time but they were short lived, and I just manage it now with mental strength, as the meds gave me bile reflux.

    take care & best wishes AnnieD



    I have had numerous radio frequency denerveation treatments for my back and neck also nerve route blocks for sciatica
    They have all helped some not as much as I would have liked but still better. The only thing is the nerves grow back and the treatments need repeating but it can be 18 months of less pain so still worth it. I know it doesn’t work for everyone and they have said at some point it may stop working for me but I’ll take what I can



    Hi Lorna,

    I too have had RF treatments and i have to say they are the most unpleasant thing that has ever happened to my body in my life. I literally did Scream the place down.
    Given i already have Nerve Damage, the RF process seemed to amplify the pain. My god it was horrific.

    Now im flying the flag for SCS. Its a game changer !.
    8 to 9/10 pain, down to just 1 to 2/10. And no meds.

    Nevro HF10.

    If you use instagram, just search HF10. So many people all over the world having it done now and changing their lives for the better.



    Having more RF end of this month 2 appointments they are using sedation they have never done that before but may be easier
    Paul are you in the UK my pain management clinic have never mentioned scs



    Hi Lorna,

    Yes im in the UK, down south in Berkshire.
    SCS is only done at a few specialist pain clinics. St. Thomas being the main and pioneers of this tech in the UK.
    I think Leeds and Southampton also do it.

    You would need to be referred to the like of St. Thomas and then go through their procedure in readiness for SCS. Which takes about 9 months from start to finish.
    Its hugely expensive and thus is an absolute last resort. But i really pushed for it.
    After 17yrs at level 8 to 9 pain, i was about to end it. No point carrying on. I think that was a wake up call for them that i really needed help.
    Now its done and absolutely amazing !.
    Just had dinner and “Charged myself”, which took 20mins. And now im good for another days total pain relief. 🙂



    Hi, I just wanted to let you know that TAPENTADOL is awful!! i have first hand experience with this drug, i started on 75mg x 2 per day and seemed to work well for pain but within a few weeks my pains came back big time long story i ended up on 300mg per day, i realised very quickly that it wasn’t oain from my back but my body was needing more so decided then i needed to come off them, i tried tapering and went straight into withdrawal and had to go back to my original dose, it then took me another year before built up up the strength to come off them and i can tell you it was HELL!! i tapered over 4 months which in reality was too much too quick but i had no guidance from the doctor he wanted me to stay on them, i went under 6 stone and became mentally and physically ill and for a year i could barely leave the house, that was 3 years ago. Since then because i became so weak i have now developed chronic sacrialic joint dysfunction, hip bursitis with possible stress fracture (i have mri on Sunday) tennis elbow, chronic oain all down my right side with clicky painful shoulders, neck, 18 tender points which in not sure what that means and this all started after a lumbar spinal fusion that failed from the beginning but was left undiagnosed for 15 years causing more stress on all my surrounding joints, it’s only now after seeing a private orthopedic doc 18 months ago who gave me the diagnoses that i feel I’m getting somewhere, however it’s a shame i was left for so long as I’m sure most of these problems could have been prevented, hip bursitis is debilitating and over the past 3 years my mobility had decreased so bad i only managed to leave my house for hospital appointment and i totally put most of my health problems down to the use of opioid medication and the none existant rehabilitation/aftercare programme my original surgeon forgot to mention, so basically i would avoid TAPENTADOL like the plague!😊



    Hi Quazzie,

    300mg A day is far too much for someone of your weight.

    I used to take 100mb in the morning and night, and im 6ft, 15st.
    Once my SCS settled in i slowed the dosage down over just 2 weeks i think and never had any issues.

    Its a very good drug, and one of the few that actually work for Nerve Pain. Given thats what it was designed for.
    In your case, its just poor management by your doctors / specialists.



    Hi All,
    As I have said many times before, we are all individual cases and we all react differently to drugs and other procedures, so what works for one person doesn’t mean it works for someone else, but we all have to try these different things to find out what does work for each of us,as individuals, I think PaulT_99 has given good advice on pain management clinics, and again each clinic varies across the country, on whats on offer, it is all a lottery some are better than others. and as Paul says to Quazzie that is a high dose and have not heard of anyone on that dosage. the only one that works somewhat for me is Amitriptyline as I have adverse reactions or just cannot tolerate,and injections, nerve ablations, ect does not work for me. so that and a Tens helps me get through, also mindfulness, as for some others what i am on and use doesn’t work for them. also the last resort is SCS and if that doesn’t work for some, then I,m stumped. But a mixture of medication and alternative methods combined can help you cope. it’s a case of finding what helps you cope on a personal level.
    any way I hope you all have a less pain day, take care and best wishes to you all, Lee



    Thank you for your reply, i was around 9st when i started on the tapentadol my weight loss was over a year and one of the main reasons i needed to come off them however my doctor actually would have had me on 600mg if i hadent of realised myself how sick they were making me.
    I feel like the last 16 years have been badly managed but now i feel like i have a great team around me.



    Hi Quazzie, I understand, and sometimes we have to try and keep a rain check on our selves and try and work with Gp’s ect. so they get to understand better what people like us actually go through. sometimes it is difficult, and sorry to hear that you feel like you have been badly managed, thats when if people feel like their not getting the help they require, then either get a second opinion or change GP ect.
    But very glad that you feel you are now getting the help you need. also this site is great for letting off a bit of steam and seeing what others say, with empathy, we are all here to try and help each other, with people that understand what each other of what it is like to live with pain, Also the difficulties with relation ships and mental health issues that come with long term pain suffers. I have been living with constant pain for about 23 years now. and seen the changes in medical practice for people with chronic pain ,as so many others have seen on this site, it is a difficult one to treat and we all wish there was just one pill that worked for all our issues. Any way take care and best wishes, Lee

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