Chronic pain is common in paediatric patients.
Approximately 25% to 37% of children and adolescents report frequent and severe pain. Some of these patients have pain-related disability, absences from school and social activities, and disrupted eating routines, sleep, and mood. An interdisciplinary approach to pain rehabilitation was developed more than 40 years ago and has been studied extensively in adults.
These programs have provided significant lessening of pain severity, improvements in physical functioning and mood, and discontinuation of opioid use across various pain diagnoses and locations.
Given their proven clinical and cost effectiveness, these programs are now considered the treatment of choice for adults who have chronic pain.
Interdisciplinary rehabilitation programs to provide similar pain management strategies for children and adolescents have been developed only recently. Despite awareness that children and adolescents need access to intensive treatment programs, availability is limited.
This article describes the development of an interdisciplinary paediatric pain rehabilitation program and reviews the first 1000 consecutive patients treated.