Pain Management

The Chronic Pain Service (pain management) is provided at University Hospital Lewisham

We are a multi-disciplinary team, consisting of medical doctors, psychologists, specialist nurses and administrative support. We provide an outpatient service for patients who live with chronic pain, e.g. lower back pain, joint pain, neck pain, fibromyalgia, complex regional pain syndrome.

Chronic pain is pain that has lasted longer than 3 to 6 months. It affects approximately 1 in 10 people in the UK, which means around 7.8 million people are living with this condition in Britain.

Chronic pain can have a significant impact upon a person’s life including their physical activity, relationships and mood. Pain is complicated and research suggests that the best approach is to try and manage the difficulties it causes, instead of just trying to change the pain on its own.

The role of the University Hospital Lewisham chronic pain service.

The role of the Chronic Pain Service is to provide evidence based services for patients who have persistent pain. Our goal is to provide high quality symptom management, to reduce pain sensations and help you to take an active role in managing your pain enabling you to live an active life.

Like many services within the country we aim to see you within 18 weeks after referral.

The research evidence for best practise in chronic pain suggests that Pain Centres should have a range of different professionals looking after patients such as:

  • Pain Consultants
  • Physiotherapists
  • Psychologists
  • Admin Support
  • Specialist Nurses


What services does the clinic provide?

The clinic provides a wide range of services, including:

  • Medication
  • Procedures and interventions
  • Psychological treatment

How to be referred:

Referrals to our service are made via your GP. The Pain Consultants review all referrals prior to offering any appointments to ensure you have been referred to the appropriate service.

What to expect after you’ve been referred:

When we have received your referral you will be sent an appointment to see one of our Pain Consultants. Your first appointment may last between 30 – 40 minutes and we will assess your pain and suggest a treatment plan.

This assessment may include:

  • A review of your pain medications – please bring a list of current medications with you. If you do not do this, your appointment may be cancelled.
  • A physical examination.
  • It may involve some discussion about other factors which might be affecting your pain such as:
    • Exercise / activity
    • Diet
    • Stress and mood
  • In some cases the doctor might suggest further investigations, these could include:
    • Blood tests
    • X-ray
    • MRI scans
    • Nerve conduction studies

The treatment plan may include:

  • New medication strategy
  • Nurse clinic appointments for a review of your pain relief medication
  • TENS machines / External neuromodulation
  • Referral to pain management programme – (Called the Centre for Active Lifestyle
  • Management or ‘CALM’ service. This is an option for patients who are registered with a Lewisham GP)
  • Individual psychology sessions to help develop ways to cope with the pain and the problems it causes. A leaflet is available at this link: Clinical Psychology in Chronic Pain Service Leaflet.pdf 
  • Injections – which offer a ‘window of opportunity’ to become more active
  • Referral to Physiotherapy.

Procedures available:

  • Epidurals
  • Capsaicin Patch
  • Facet joint injections
  • Joint injections
  • Pulsed or Continuous Radiofrequency
  • Trigger points
  • Nerve Root Injections
  • Other nerve blocks

A leaflet on the Chronic Pain Service procedures available can be found here Procedure Leaflet.pdf.

During your consultation, a decision may be made to offer you a procedure. If this happens, you will be put on our waiting list and we will send you an appointment.

You may be booked for a single injection or a course of treatment.

Meet the team

Pain Consultants:

  • Dr Pierluigi di Vadi
  • Dr Remigiusz Lecybyl

Clinical Psychologists:

  • Dr Stephanie Jarrett
  • Dr Anna Ferguson

Specialist Nurses:

  • Tamzin Bunton
  •  Maria Pedro
  •  Jo Newson
  •  Paula Nash

Secretary:

  • Maria Williams

Admissions co-ordinator:

  • Jan Sheppard

Contact us:

Direct Number: 020 8690 9127

Fax:  020 8333 3248

Address:

Anaesthetics Department

2nd Floor, Ravensbourne Block

University Hospital Lewisham

Lewisham High Street

London SE13 6LH.

What should I do if I cannot attend my appointment?

Phone 020 8690 9127 and let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to attend your appointment. If you do not attend your appointment and have not let us know in advance that you are not coming then according to hospital policy we will have to discharge you.

As we are a teaching hospital, medical students may be present for your consultation.

If you would rather they were not present, please let the doctor know when you attend.

The information provided here is available as a leaflet using this link: Chronic Pain Service Leaflet.pdf.

If You Cannot Attend

If You Cannot Attend

If you cannot make your appointment, please let us know as soon as possible.

Every year millions of pounds is wasted in the NHS because patients do not turn up to their appointments.

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