Painaustralia eNews Issue 44, 15 July 2014
- Tasmania Moves on Pain Strategy
- Stem Cell Therapy Offers Radical New Treatment for Orofacial Pain
- New Chronic Pain Model of Care for Western Australia
- Don't Turn Your Back on It
- New Regional Pain Clinic Launches in Mildura
- New Program to Help Prevent Chronic Conditions in Nurses
- Artists' Story Offers Insights into Chronic Pain
- Beliefs More Powerful Than Pain
- Use OTC NSAIDs Only as Recommended
- PSA Award for Quality Use of Medicines in Pain Management: Applications Open
- New Research: Seeking Participants
- Australian Pain Society 35th Annual Scientific Meeting: Call for Submissions
- National Pain Week 21-27 July: Events
- Arthritis and Osteoporosis Victoria webinar – Optimal use of opioids in musculoskeletal pain: 16 July 2014
- Pain Management Symposia 2014
- Making Sense of Pain Inter-Professional Workshop: 14-15 November 2014
- Join Painaustralia
Tasmania Moves on Pain Strategy
Tasmania is the latest state to take up the call for better pain management services, focusing initially on the needs of people in rural and remote areas.
Minister for Health, Michael Ferguson (pictured), said the Tasmanian Government is working hard to improve the management of chronic pain, in line with the goals of the National Pain Strategy.
The government has formed a Chronic Pain Steering Committee, which will be using the National Pain Strategy as a framework to guide the development of a directory of chronic pain services in the state.
Chaired by the Director of Allied Health in the Tasmanian Health Organisation – North West, the committee has representation from the Royal Hobart Hospital Pain Service, the Tasmanian Health Organisations, the Tasmania Medicare Local, the Department of Health and Human Services and several privately practicing clinicians.
As a first step toward improving service delivery, the Department of Health and Human Services, through the Rural Health Outreach Fund, is funding outreach chronic pain services in rural and remote locations in the north and north west of Tasmania.
The services consist of 10-week chronic pain self-management programs delivered by allied health professionals. Based on the successful STEPS program used in Perth, the programs are multidisciplinary in nature and address the physical, psychological, social and environmental dimensions of chronic pain.
Stem Cell Therapy Offers Radical New Treatment for Orofacial Pain
A new stem cell treatment, developed in Australia, offers a radical new approach to treating orofacial pain from the trigeminal cranial nerve.
In a world-first, pain management specialist Dr Russell Vickers (pictured) and facial plastic surgeon Dr John Flood from Sydney are assessing a new form of treatment, which involves injecting patients with their own stem cells, into sites of persistent pain and other affected areas.
This innovative stem cell therapy, HiQCell®, was developed by Sydney-based regenerative medicine company, Regeneus.
"Based on preliminary findings, the stem cell treatment could constitute a real breakthrough for people suffering complex orofacial nerve pain," said Dr Vickers.
Ten patients have undergone the procedure to date, to assess proof of concept and evaluation of safety after six months, with encouraging results and no side effects.
All patients had symptoms of neuropathic trigeminal pain, lasting from four months to more than six years. At six months post-treatment, half had significantly less pain and also had significantly reduced reliance on pain medication.
For one patient, the transformation was particularly remarkable. The young woman, who developed trigeminal autonomic cephalalgia six years prior, faced debilitating facial pain every day, along with other symptoms. Her pain scale rated an eight out of 10, she slept only two hours a night, and she was on high doses of medications.
Dr Vickers and Dr Flood took high-viability stem cells from the fat tissue in the lumbar region and injected them into areas of tissue loss, into nerves and muscles. The patient was also prescribed herbal extracts.
Four months after the treatment, the patient was pain-free on six out of seven days, and when it happened, her pain score was signifiantly reduced. She was able to sleep six hours a night, her other symptoms were vastly improved, and she had reduced her dosage of medication.
The results have just been published in the Journal of Pain Research.
New Chronic Pain Model of Care for Western Australia
The vast area of Western Australia poses a logistical challenge for delivery of chronic pain services, but the new Pain Health Working Group aims to develop a standardised approach across the state.
The Pain Health Working Group, consisting of 35 individuals from a wide cross section of the community, including government representatives, healthcare professionsals and consumers, will develop a state-specific Model of Care that can be applied to a range of chronic pain conditions.
In addition, the Model of Care will address, in particular, paediatric and adolescent care and the need for appropriate transition services to adult care; pelvic pain; cancer pain and management of pain in palliative care.
Co-chaired by Dr Stephanie Davies and Dr Greg Parkin-Smith, the working group will aim to deliver an evidence-based best-practice model, making it easier for healthcare professionals as well as consumers to access the guidance they need.
The Model of Care will include resources for better education and knowledge, for both healthcare professionals and consumers, which will complement existing tools such as the painHEALTH website; clearer pathways for patient care; and better access for people in rural and remote areas, including clear guidelines on the use of Telehealth.
It will also develop straegies for raising awareness about chronic pain, and where to go for help, as well a framework for allocating resources to rural and remote areas in an equitable manner.
Dr Ce Kealley (pictured), from WA Health, says the nature of distance in the state will require some innovative thought.
"We are the largest of any state, but we have very few regional centres, so our Model of Care will need to address the issues we have with distance.
"At the end of the day, what we want is equitable access to chronic pain services for everyone in Western Australia, no matter where they live."
"We are confident the Pain Health Working Group can help us reach that goal."
For more information, email Dr Ce Kealley firstname.lastname@example.org
Don't Turn Your Back on It
A new campaign aims to raise the profile of Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), a form of arthritis that mainly affects the spine, and inflammatory back pain (IBP).
The Don't Turn Your Back On It campaign, supported by Arthritis & Osteoporosis NSW, is focusing on young men to encourage them to seek medical attention and advice for back pain.
In Australia, 2.3 million men report they suffer from persistent spinal pain and 45 per cent rate their pain as severe.
Now they will be able to take a short five-question online screener, which will allow them to assess their back or spinal pain and look at further steps to address it.
The screener was developed by the Assessment of SpondyloArthritis International Society, and was endorsed in 2013 by European experts to be used by GPs to screen patients for IBP and AS.
One of the faces of the campaign, Cameron Chung, says early detection of AS at the age of 13 has helped him manage the condition.
Now 30 and a personal trainer, Mr Chung embraces a healthy diet and exercise to manage his condition and prevent his spine from fusing.
To find out more or to access the screener, visit: www.dontturnyourbackonit.com.au
New Regional Pain Clinic Launches in Mildura
A new multidisciplinary pain clinic has opened in Mildura, giving the people of Victoria's north-west better access to much needed services, thanks to the efforts of Lydia Senior (pictured, third from left) and her team at Lower Murray Medicare Local (LMML).
The new Regional Care Coordination Service for Pain Management will avoid chronic pain patients having to travel hundreds of kilometres to access services in Bendigo, Melbourne, Adelaide or Sydney, and will reduce wait times.
Expected to cater for 300 people in its first year alone, the service will offer consultations with pain management specialists, a pain management GP, psychologists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and practice nurses, and there will be opportunities for other evidence-based therapies, such as yoga.
Using a patient-centred approach, the Care Coordinator will become a central contact point for patients and healthcare providers, and will develop a pain management plan in partnership with each patient.
The plan will include medication reviews, particularly for those people reliant on opioids for pain relief, to ensure their prescriptions are appropriate.
"Care coordination means that patients will have all of the health providers they need working with them under one dedicated plan," said LMML CEO Lydia Senior.
"Alongside our new clinic, we have also invested in upskilling a range of existing service providers through specific pain management training, and we are working with the Mildura Base Hospital to recruit a shared pain management specialist to the region."
For more information, contact LMML CEO Lydia Senior 03 5023 8633.
New Program to Help Prevent Chronic Conditions in Nurses
Registered Nurse Allie Wilson (pictured) was nursing in London, worrying about the health of her patients even when she wasn't at work, yet for years she ignored the excruciating pain in her back.
It ended up being a herniated disc, and 15 years on, Ms Wilson has developed a program to encourage all nurses to give themselves the same level of care they give to others, and reduce the incidence of chronic disease within the nursing profession.
The Healthy Happy Nurse Video Series aims primarily to help prevent burn out and chronic pain.
"Nurses are very intuitive when it comes to their patients, and we always trust that inner voice and take action. But we often overlook, or deliberately ignore, signs of distress in our own bodies," said Ms Wilson, who is also the best-selling author of What I Wish I Knew About Nursing and editor of Wellbeing for Nurses Magazine.
"Nursing can be very physically demanding, and many nurses end up with chronic pain conditions, particularly back pain, despite having deep medical knowledge."
Rather than explaining how to manage pain, or other chronic conditions, the course takes a step back, and encourages a new perspective based in self-awareness, in order to cope better on a daily basis, and prevent problems from arising.
Offering a holistic approach, the Healthy Happy Nurse Video Series is divided into three modules: mindset; physical; and nursing health.
Each module comes with a five-minute video, plus course content, homework, exclusive access to a Happy Healthy Nurse online group, consutations with Ms Wilson, as well as access to a range of other resources.
To find out more, visit the Healthy Happy Nurse Video Series website, where you can sign up for three introductory videos at no cost.
"Of the very many things that set humans apart from all else, certainly the most beautiful is our ability to express our lives creatively. If emotions were viscous, then life is the palette for the artist to dip their brush...so what happens when that ability to express is cut short?"
It features Melbourne artist Soula Mantalvanos, and explores her journey into the world of chronic pain after the fitball she was sitting on burst, and she fell onto the concrete floor below.
After taking almost five years to get a diagnosis – pudendal neuralgia – and the right kind of treatment, Ms Mantalvanos is slowly making progress back to 'normality'.
Although based on one person, this short documentary film speaks the language of people with chronic pain everywhere.
Currently the Director is seeking funding to expand the film for television. If you or your organization can help, please contact him here.
People with chronic pain are more likely to experience disability because of their beliefs and behaviours, rather than their pain or other physical symptoms, says Professor Michael Nicholas (pictured), Director of Pain Education and Pain Management Programs at the Pain Management and Research Centre in Sydney.
Speaking at the Australian Psychological Society's College of Clinical Psychologists Conference in Melbourne, Professor Nicholas said the key to minimising disability is to teach self-management of chronic pain, which has a proven track record.
The role of the psychologist is to help people overcome their fears and anxieties about pain, with Cognitive Behaviour Therapy one of the most successful modes of treatment.
"People shouldn't wait for pain relief to get on with their lives because they wil be disappointed," said Professor Nicholas.
"People can be helped to identify unhelpful perspectives and patterns of thinking, to set goals, increase activity levels, learn self-regulaton strategies and deal with setbacks."
Professor Nicholas used the conference as an opportunity to call for more funding for research into prevention of disability associated with chronic pain, which would have enormous dividends for individuals and the community.
Over-the-counter (OTC) non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are among the most widely used medications in the world, but there has been growing concern about the dangers of taking them incorrectly.
Now the Australian Self Medication Industry (ASMI) has called for consumers to ensure they use OTC NSAIDs only for short-term pain relief, and only at the recommended dose.
This was in response to an Australian study published in the journal Pain, which revealed that prescribing practices for NSAIDs do not align with specific clinical practice guidelines for safe use in older people.
The study of 1,700 men aged over 70 found that 8.2 percent of participants reported regular NSAID use, compared with 2.9 percent reporting use as needed.
The mean treatment time for regular NSAIDs use was 4.9 years, suggesting long-term rather than the short-term use recommended by the guidelines.
ASMI Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Steve Scarff said, "NSAIDs are one of the most widely used medicines for pain and inflammation and they have a well-known safety profile, particularly at recommended doses.
"OTC NSAIDs are commonly used to provide pain relief for common problems such as headache, toothache, sprains and strains. They are intended for short-term use only, normally under a week.
"It is important that consumers follow the instructions on the label and only use the medicine as directed."
PSA Award for Quality Use of Medicines in Pain Management: Applications Open
Applications are now open for the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) Award for Quality Use of Medicines in Pain Management.
PSA, in collaboration with Mundipharma, grants the award annually, to a pharmacist member who works consistently to optimise the health and wellbeing of consumers with persistent pain.
The recipient will receive free registration, travel and accommodation for PAC14.
If you wish to nominate yourself or someone else for the award, you will need to explain what strategies you have implemented to contribute to achieveing one or more of the key goals of the National Pain Strategy.
Nominations close 7 August 2014. For an application form or to find out more, visit the PSA website.
New Research: Seeking Participants
CQ University in Rockhampton is investigating the impact of pain acceptance on the relationship between pain catastrophising and quality of life in adults with chronic pain over the age of 45.
The study involves completion of an online survey, which will take about 30 minutes to complete. The survey is available here.
The Griffith Health Centre, Gold Coast, is seeking people with chronic headache to participate in a clinical trial. Funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council and headed by Professor Paul Martin, the trial aims to substantially reduce the frequency and severity of recurrent headaches/migraines following treatment that addresses unique factors associated with each individual's headaches.
Eligible participants will be offered 12, one-hour free weekly treatment sessions, and will participate in four assessment sessions (pre-treatment, post-treatment, four-month follow up and 12-month follow up). Treatment will be delivered by registered psychologists and advice will be given regarding behavioural management of the triggers of recurrent headache.
Interested people should contact Arissa Brunelli on 07 5678 0727 or email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please promote these studies through your networks.
Australian Pain Society 35th Annual Scientific Meeting: Call for Submissions
Topical session submissions are now open for the Australian Pain Society's 35th Annual Scientific Meeting, to be held in Brisbane 15-18 March 2015.
To view the topical session submission guidelines please click here and to visit the online topical session submission page please click here. The deadline for topical session submissions is 16 July 2014.
Abstract submissions for free papers and posters will open on 2 August 2014 and close on 3 October 2014.
National Pain Week 21-27 July: Events
There are a number of events scheduled for National Pain Week, and host Chronic Pain Australia is encouraging everyone to get on board.
· On 18 July 2014, the Cronulla Sharks will dedicate their game against the Cowboys at Remondis Stadium, to raising awareness about chronic pain.
· On 22 July, Pain Support ACT (APMA) is inviting people who live with chronic pain, their friends, family and carers to join a lunch at Belconnen.
· On 24 July, there will be a Pain is Ageless Rally at Martin Place in Sydney.
To find out more about these and other events, visit the National Pain Week website.
Arthritis and Osteoporosis Victoria webinar – Optimal use of opioids in musculoskeletal pain: 16 July 2014
Presented by Dr Malcolm Hogg, Specialist in Anaesthesia and Pain Management and President of the Australian Pain Society, the 'Optimal use of opioids in musculoskeletal pain' webinar will examine an approach for the assessment of musculoskeletal pain and guidelines for opioid therapy in non-cancer pain.
While opioid analgesics are established therapy for acute pain states, the role for opioids in persistent non-cancer pain is less clear, due to lack of population benefits in clinical trials, lowered effectiveness in long term dosing and potential for harm.
In well-selected patients, however, benefit of opioid therapy can be attained as part of a multimodal approach, incorporating patient education, adjuvant medications, an exercise program and regular review.
The webinar will take place Wednesday 16 July 2014, 7-8pm (AEST). For further information and to register, click here. For further information about other webinars in the 'MSK Health' webinar series, click here.
Pain Management Symposia 2014
The University of Sydney invites healthcare professionals and students with an interest in pain, to attend 'Treating and Managing Pain' symposia.
Presented by experts from the Pain Management Research Institute as well as local medical practitioners, the focus will be the management and treatment of pain from a multidisciplinary perspective, in a community setting.
Aiming to develop practical techniques, topics will include how to understand and assess the presenting problem; how to develop treatment plans; and how to develop pain interventions.
With symposia to be held in the Nepean, Coffs Harbour and Dubbo, this is a great opportunity for those outside metropolitan Sydney to further their knowledge.
For more information, click here.
Making Sense of Pain Inter-Professional Workshop: 14-15 November 2014
The Making Sense of Pain Inter-Professional Workshop offers healthcare professionals a unique opportunity to update their knowledge and skills about chronic pain management, and to effectively transfer them into their clinical practice setting.
Presenters include Melanie Galbraith (Physiotherapist), Assoc-Professor Vance Locke (Academic Psychologist), Jane Muirhead (Occupational Therapist), Dr John Quintner (Physician in Rheumatology and Pain Medicine) and Mary Roberts (Psychologist).
The workshop will run 14-15 November 2104, and constitutes Australian Physiotherapy Association CPD points (16 hours).
PMRI Visiting Scholars Program
Associate Professor Toby Hall from Curtin University and the University of Western Australia will present a seminar entitled Classification and physical treatment of neural tissue pain disorders.
When: 31 July 2014 2014, 4-5pm
Venue: Auditorium, Kolling Building, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney
Find out more here
Pain Management in Practice Workshops
Pain Management in Practice is delivering interdisciplinary one-day and two-day workshops across Australia, to provide training to clinicians and return-to-work professionals who manage people with persistent pain, in order to maximise work and personal function.
When: 24-25 July (Melb), 11 September (Brisb), 30 October (Syd),
For more information visit www.painmanagementinpractice.com/workshops.html
Yoga for Pain
This has been designed to help people with fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and persistent pain manage the stress of their condition, and reconnect with their bodies.
When: The next course runs in July 2014
Venue: Perth metro area
For more information visit www.findingyoga.com.au/yoga-for-pain
Primary Health Care Research Conference
The PHC Conference is widely acknowledged as the premier research and networking conference in Australia, the place to promote your organisation and work to the primary health care research community.
When: 23-25 July
Venue: National Convention Centre, Canberra
For details visit: www.phcris.org.au/conference/
Sydney Medical School Pain Management Symposia 2014
For healthcare professionals and students with an interest in pain, to learn more about effective multidisiciplinary pain management, in a community setting.
When: 8.30am – 5pm all locations
Locations: Nepean Clinical School (16 August), Novotel Pacific Bay Resort Coffs Harbour (30 August), Dubbo Convention Centre (24 October)
For more information, click here.
ANZSPM 2014: Palliative Medicine: past, present and future
The Australian and New Zealand Society of Palliative Medicine will be hosting its 20th annual scientific meeting.
When: 2 -5 September
Venue: Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa, Gold Coast
For details visit: www.etouches.com/ehome/65181
Over 1000 delegates attend this annual conference each year, which will include a range of active learning modules, workshops, sessions, short paper presentations and CPR workshops to assist GPs to fulfil their QI&CPD requirements.
When: 9-11 October
Where: Adelaide Convention Centre, Adelaide
For details visit: www.gpconference.com.au
Making Sense of Pain Inter-Professional Workshop
Healthcare professionals from all disciplines will have a unique opportunity to update their knowledge and skills about pain management, and to effectively transfer them into their clinical practice setting. Australian Physiotherapy Association CPD points (16 hours).
When: Friday 14 – Saturday 15 November 2104, and constitutes
Venue: Wyllie Arthritis Centre, 17 Lemnos St. SHENTON PARK WA
50 Shades of Pain Conference 3-5 December
The 50 Shades of Pain Conference will be held 3-5 December 2014 in Brisbane. Hosted by the Australian Pain Management Association and Palliative Care Queensland, it will focus on advanced clinical issues in palliative care and pain management. For specialist palliative and pain management doctors, nurses, allied health practitioners, educators and volunteers from across Australia.
For details or sponsorship opportunities contact: John-Paul Kristensen on 07 3256 2486 You can also download the flyer.
Australian Pain Society's 35th Annual Scientific Meeting 15-18 March
The theme of next year's conference is Managing Pain: from mechanism to policy This is the only multidisciplinary conference in Australia offering insights into the complex nature of pain management from medical, nursing and allied health perspectives. The program will include: brain pain, immune stressors, acute pain, chronic pain, opioids, neuromodulation, emerging interventional techniques, paediatrics, physiotherapy, psychology. Speakers include Professor Herta Flor, Central Institute of Mental Health, Germany, Dr Mary Lynch of Dalhousie University, Canada and Dr Frank Porreca from the University of Arizona College of Medicine, USA.
When: 15-18 March 2015
Venue: Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre
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Our capacity to influence government policy and improve understanding and management of pain is directly related to the strength of our membership network.
We are currently preparing a 4 year report on progress with the National Pain Strategy. If your organisation has contributed to this progress, or would like to do so in the future, we would love to hear from you.
Your support could make all the difference.
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