Pain Management

The Pain Management Service involves different healthcare professionals working together to provide care for people with severe and/or chronic (long lasting) pain. The service also supports people with specific pain related to cancer. Our aim is that all people who use our service will have access to right pain management treatment to help them to achieve a good quality of life.

Nurses, doctors, physiotherapists, healthcare assistants and pain psychologists all work for the service and specialise in the management of pain. Referrals to our service are received from a GP, or healthcare professional.


For patients experiencing short term pain, known as acute pain, the team will carry out ward rounds at both Sandwell and City Hospital sites and there are several specialist nurse-led pain clinics.


We also help patients to self-manage pain, offer psychology sessions and specialist physiotherapy.

Patients experiencing this sort of pain can expect: 

  • Support and advice
  • Support in the use of analgesic pumps
  • Pain management techniques for recurring chronic pain conditions that flare up

Chronic, ‘long term’ or persistent pain lasts from months to years. Chronic pain can be complex and each person’s pain experience will be different.  Our service aims to help people in managing their pain to help them improve their quality of life, as it is not always possible to cure chronic pain.

Outpatient clinics

We receive referrals from GPs or from consultants in other specialties (such as, rheumatologists). Referrals are firstly reviewed by clinical staff to determine what part of our service may be useful. People may then receive an appointment to one of our outpatient pain clinics. This clinical appointment may involve meeting with a number of different specialists, including:

  • Nurse specialists, who will ask the patient specific questions about the nature of their pain and advise them of potential treatment options.
  • psychologist, who may discuss with the patient how pain is affecting on aspects, like relationships, sleep or mood in their daily life. A psychologist may also help to consider what things in people’s lives could help them manage the pain. A physiotherapist who will assess the patient’s mobility and strength, and offer advice on stretches, exercises and activities.
  • medical consultant in pain management who will assess the medication and give advice on analgesics and other treatment, such as nerve blocks.

All of the health professionals within our team have a special interest in pain management and work together with patients to undertake a comprehensive assessment and develop a treatment plan based on the difficulties each individual patient faces.

Diagnostic tests such as X-rays, MRIs and blood tests are not routinely performed as these are usually done prior to your referral to the clinic.

Pain self-management

Pain self-management is for people who are suffering with long term pain. Within our service, self-management may involve a 10-week group programme or could be delivered on a one-to-one basis. Self-management includes learning information about pain, for example, what is acute or chronic pain, how it may persist over time and considering what strategies may help people manage their pain. The group does not necessarily aim to take the pain away, but seeks to help people live fulfilling lives with their pain. This is different for each person, but could include becoming more active in the things that provide people enjoyment in their life.

Sessions for the 10-week programme, last 2.5 hours. Some of the topics covered include:

  • The difference between acute and chronic pain and why they may be managed differently.
  • How pain can impact sleep, relationships and mood
  • Relaxation techniques and stress management

Pain Procedures

Some patients with chronic pain conditions may be suitable for treatments that are aimed at reducing the pain signals travelling through certain nerves within the body. This may be:

  • Injection to the site of your pain with local anesthetic and steroid being injected to bathe the nerve, which calms the pain.
  • Lidocaine +/- Magnesium infusion to help reduce widespread body pain
  • Qutenza patch applied to a specific area to help treat and reduce nerve pain.

These interventions take place in the Birmingham Treatment Centre at City Hospital and are day case procedures only.

Community pain management services

Community outpatient clinics are also held weekly at the Lyng Centre for Health in West Bromwich and at the Birmingham Treatment Centre.

Useful websites


You can contact the service by calling the numbers below:

  • 0121 507 4866
  • 0121 507 5603
  • 0121 507 4344

Monday to Friday, 9am-4pm.

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