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Our Cook Children's Pain Management program consists of an inpatient pain consultation service and outpatient Pain Management clinic. In both settings, our pediatric pain team is specialized in the evaluation and treatment of a variety of pain conditions including acute post-operative pain, sickle cell disease, cancer, arthritis, cystic fibrosis, migraines and much more.

Patients and families benefit from our individualized approach to managing pain, which includes caregivers across specialties, as well as treatment methods that target your child's specific needs. Our goal is to work in partnership with you and your child to develop personalized plan of care. That plan may include:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Biofeedback
  • Cognitive behavior therapy
  • Comfort visits with our Sit...Stay....Play dog
  • Guided imagery
  • Interventional pain procedures
  • Lifestyle modifications and education
  • Massage therapy
  • Medical acupuncture/acupressure
  • Medication management
  • Relaxation therapy
  • Yoga therapy

Inpatient pain consultation service

Cook Children's inpatient Pain Management team includes doctors, nurses, therapists and clinicians who are specially trained in treating infants, children and teens who are having surgery or a treatment at our medical center that requires additional pain management.

While many minimally invasive surgeries are virtually pain free or only require short-term pain relief, other more complex surgeries need more specialized pain care. In these cases, we work closely with your child's hospital team to determine the best plan of care to control or manage your child's pain. If rehabilitation therapy is part of your child's recovery, our pain management therapists will support and assess your child's functional ability and progress toward their pain management goals.

If your child is receiving treatment in the medical center for an illness such as cancer or juvenile arthritis, our pain specialists will work with your child's medical team to manage pain and side effects from treatment. Because many treatments can feel stressful to a child, our goal is to reduce as much pain and anxiety as possible so your child feels more comfortable and relaxed.

For children who are in the hospital due to a serious injury, expert pain management can be a critical part of their healing and recovery. From broken bones to head injuries, burns and more, you can trust that your child is in excellent hands.

Because each child referred to us is different, you can expect that we will work with your child's entire health care team to create a plan that is unique to your child's needs. Your child's care includes:

  • Referral consultation
  • Individualized pain plan of care
  • Continual assessment of your child's pain
  • Modified pain plan of care as needed

Outpatient Pain Management clinic

We see patients for chronic pain or recurrent pain in our outpatient Pain Management clinic. Chronic pain is a pain that has lasted longer than the expected time for normal healing and is generally present for more than three months. Conditions that we treat in our clinic include, but are not limited to, chronic or recurrent headaches, back pain, abdominal pain, myofascial pain and neuropathic pain. It may be related to other chronic conditions like juvenile arthritis or hypermobility or less common conditions like complex regional pain syndrome. If your child is experiencing a chronic pain, you may have a referring physician send a referral for us to meet with you and your child for a new patient consultation. We accept referrals for patients up to 18 years of age.

Our outpatient team is made up of a pediatric board-certified anesthesiologist who specializes in pain management, a nationally certified counselor specialized in psychophysiology and physical therapists dedicated to the treatment of chronic pain. Depending on your insurance and demographic information, your initial visit may be with our entire team.

Our team is dedicated to gathering a thorough history and exam, discussing treatment options with you and your child and providing you with a tailored plan of care. This care plan may include:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Biofeedback
  • Guided imagery
  • Interventional pain procedures
  • Lifestyle modifications and education
  • Massage therapy
  • Medical acupuncture/acupressure
  • Medication management
  • Pain-focused cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Physical therapy and/or occupational therapy
  • Relaxation therapy
  • Yoga therapy

Inpatient Pain Rehabilitation program

Children who struggle to improve or regain their function despite adequate outpatient services may benefit from our inpatient pain rehabilitation program. Our two-week Inpatient Pain Rehabilitation program uses a team approach to equip patients with the tools needed to manage and overcome their pain. Our team consists of a board-certified anesthesiologist trained in pain management, a clinical therapist licensed in psychophysiology, a physical therapist, an occupational therapist, a nurse coordinator and additional health care team members. Patients participate in daily intensive physical and occupational therapy while engaging in clinical therapy sessions. Our goal is to lay a strong foundation for your child's recovery and help them restore as much functionality as possible.

First off, I want to say how amazing my team in the program has been. I feel that the program is exactly what I needed to help me learn how to get back to a normal life. I feel the program is a success, and I am only beginning to see the progress that I will make (which will be a great confidence booster). After being here for two weeks, I knew that coming to the program was a great decision, and a decision that I needed to make.

Now that I am toward the end of my admission, it is time to shift gears into my home life. When thinking about going home and getting back to a somewhat normal schedule, I am excited and look forward to it. I feel ecstatic and pumped to get back home and be independent, doing what I want to do, when I want to do them. Also, I feel that the greatest adjustment will be for the rest of my family, as they have been so used to helping me do everything. I look forward to waking up and walking downstairs to make my OWN breakfast by myself.

Last but not least, I cannot fathom the progress I have made whilst being in this program. From walking normally, feeling exponentially less pain, going to the bathroom by myself, I feel that this program has been a complete success. I am so thankful that I was ready to come to the program, as I have felt the most improvement in my quality of life since getting injured two and a half years ago. Not only have I made physical progress, my frame of mind and emotional progress have been outstanding. The emotional progress has helped me frame my thoughts and feelings in a productive way that will help me manage them. Overall, I feel the program has given me the road map and tools I need to have a successful recovery, and be able to manage my recovery process from a home setting. I want to thank everyone who has helped make this program so successful. — Luke, 15 years old

Palliative Care

The goal of palliative care is to ensure the best quality of life for a child who has been diagnosed with a life-threatening disease or life-limiting condition. Our pain team will collaborate with the Palliative Care team, and the rest of your child's medical team, to help your child be as comfortable as possible.