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Children's Pain Service

​KKH Children’s Pain Service is a team of dedicated anaesthetists and nurses who are passionate about making your child’s hospital experience as pain-free and stress-free as possible. We provide individualised care that caters to each child’s unique needs, through our 24/7 acute pain service, children’s pain clinics and procedural pain champions. Be it immediate post-operative pain, or deeper and more complex pain issues, we have the knowledge, expertise and empathy to help you and your child.

Management of Acute Pain

Acute pain may arise from injury, painful diseases, or as a result of surgery. Poorly controlled pain can be debilitating and distressing to both your child and yourself. When needed, referrals are made to the Children’s Pain Service to optimise analgesia. We provide advance pain management modalities such as Patient-controlled Analgesia (PCA), epidural services or nerve blocks for pain management, and a dedicated pain team will review the patients daily through a service that is available round the clock.

Management of Procedural Pain

Many procedures such as blood-taking or dressing changes are painful and thus frightening for children. We endeavour to mitigate these discomforts by providing peri-procedural analgesia, sedation or anesthesia as necessary. Our service also works closely with multiple disciplines to establish protocols and workflows that reduces discomfort from your child's hospital experience. Together we strive for a pain-free strain-free environment.

Management of Chronic / Complex Pain

The Children’s Pain Service also runs the Children’s Pain Clinic. Our multi-disciplinary team of physicians, nurse clinicians, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and psychologists employ a holistic approach to the management of different chronic and complex pain conditions. Upon first consultation with the physician, a preliminary diagnosis may be formed, and a tailored plan of management formulated. Further investigations may be needed to delineate the problem, and both medications and physical therapy may be prescribed to relieve pain and accelerate healing. As part of the holistic nature of your treatment, our psychologists will teach you and your child cognitive behavioural techniques that alleviate pain. Chronic pain is a genuine issue. If you believe your child is suffering from it, ask your doctor for a referral to the Children’s Pain Service.

Children's Pain Management Clinic

Is your child in pain?

Pain can interfere with many aspects of your child’s life, be it self-care, sleep, mood, schooling, or social interactions within the family and amongst friends. Longstanding pain can often be frustrating for those struggling with it and leaves both parents and child feeling helpless.

You may have sought medical help and have had multiple investigations done for your child, but may be left feeling that the pain has not been sufficiently resolved. Treating paediatric chronic pain effectively often requires the expertise and teamwork of individuals from many different disciplines.

What type of pain conditions do we treat?

Our clinic team works with children and adolescents with

  • Headaches
  • Recurrent or Functional Abdominal Pain
  • Low Back Pain
  • Neuropathic Pain
  • Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
  • And other pain diagnoses

A holistic and personalised approach to pain management

The Children's Pain Management Clinic work as an interdisciplinary unit to evaluate and treat children and adolescents with chronic pain. Our team comprises several healthcare providers: a physician, a nurse educator, a physiotherapist, an occupational therapist and a psychologist.

Our roles

Physician - Many of our patients and their parents are frustrated and worried by the lack of an explanation for their pain despite having been seen by many doctors. The physician will work with you to better understand how this pain came about, and to plan the best course of therapy for your child.

Nurse educator - When you and your child need further clarification after your visits, or if your child has a pain flare and you do not know the best course of action to take, or if you need someone to help coordinate your pain team appointments, our pain specialty care nurse will be there to help you.

Physiotherapist - Children who have had pain for a significant amount of time often develop a fear of moving the affected part, which often also leads to becoming physically weaker and less coordinated. Weakness in specific muscle groups may also contribute to pain. The physiotherapist will assess and prescribe a suitable course of therapy through the use of multiple techniques.

Occupational Therapist - Pain often affects sleep, self-care, as well as the ability to go to school and participate in sports and other activities. In some instances, a child may be more sensitive to some sensory inputs and may need help regulating their bodily responses. The occupational therapist will assess how this is affecting your child and teach skills such as sleep hygiene, self-regulation, activity pacing, environmental adaptation and goal-setting.

Psychologist - Psychologists help patients cope with thoughts, feelings and behaviours that result from, and sometimes, contribute to chronic pain, such as frustration or depression. The psychologist will work with your child and you to explore worries and stresses related to pain. This helps us to develop an intervention plan that includes learning helpful coping strategies, relaxation techniques, and changing negative beliefs about pain.

Ask your doctor for a referral if

  • Your child has been experiencing constant or frequent pain for more than 3 months despite having sought or received medical treatment, regardless of diagnosis or lack thereof.
  • The nature or intensity of the above-mentioned pain has been worsening or fluctuating despite intervention.
  • Your child has difficulty attending school because of pain.
  • Your child now has difficulty in carrying out his/her school activities or self-care routines due to pain.
  • Your child, because of the pain, has developed:
    - Changes in sleep (e.g. sleeplessness, frequent waking in the night).
    - Changes in mood and behavior (e.g. more angry/ irritable or depressed/withdrawn).

We understand how pain affects a child, not just physically, but also functionally, socially, emotionally and psychologically. We also understand how it affects you as parents and how it can affect your whole family. As such, we offer a holistic and personalised treatment and education programme. Our goal is to restore your child's daily functioning and wellness, and put your child back in control of his/her life despite the pain.

If you wish to have your child attend a multidisciplinary evaluation at the Children’s Pain Management Clinic, please enquire with your doctor today.