Pain management at Fitzwilliam Hospital
Fitzwilliam Hospital provides comprehensive care for patients with chronic pain resulting from a wide range of musculoskeletal problems. Muscular and spinal pain manifests around the neck, chest and lower back region as well as sciatica pain in the legs. It can be severe and greatly impact on a patient’s quality of life and functionality.
Our pain management consultants have a wealth of experience in helping patients manage persistent or chronic pain arising from a wide variety of orthopaedic conditions. They will formulate comprehensive treatment plans utilising a range of interventions and pain management programmes to reduce pain, increase a patient’s ability to cope with pain, and help patients return to a normal lifestyle.
Our pain management consultants need to understand the source of your pain to provide the best treatment options and offer advice to help you to manage your pain. They often work together with consultant orthopaedic surgeons and chartered physiotherapists to establish this.
Common pain management techniques include:
- Drug therapy (analgesics, anti-inflammatories)
- Joint and spinal injections
- Nerve injections
- Ultrasound and x-ray guided injections
- Physical exercise including stretching and strengthening exercises
- Stress management
- Psychological support
A joint injection of steroid medicine (also called corticosteroid) may be offered to reduce inflammation and treat pain that is present in many joints including the hip, knee, shoulder, ankle elbow and wrist. Often a joint injection also includes a local anaesthetic that serves to numb the pain in your joint.
These injections can offer pain relief lasting from one week to months. If they relieve your pain they can be repeated every three months but no more than four times a year if needed.
Steroid joint injections won’t offer a cure for the problem that’s causing your pain but they will help you to cope with the pain, ease your symptoms and allow you to move your joint more easily. Often they are combined with physiotherapy as they can allow the physiotherapy to work better.
If you have sciatica pain that is caused due to pressure on a nerve root, then you may be given a nerve block. This is an injection given close to an affected nerve as it leaves your spine.
The injection contains a mixture of local anaesthetic and steroid. The local anaesthetic numbs your nerves and the steroid reduces pain and inflammation around the nerve root.
If you found a nerve block helpful your consultant may offer you a repeat nerve block.
Exercise and stretching
Often simple exercises and stretches can help reduce muscular pain. Our chartered physiotherapists can offer you advice on exercises and stretches and develop an exercise plan that can help relieve your pain and keep your joints healthy.