Pain management service

The Barts Health Pain Service offers a wide range of services to help you manage your pain whether you are experiencing pain after surgery or living with chronic pain. 

We are a multidisciplinary team comprising of highly skilled doctors, nurses, psychologists, physiotherapists and acupuncturists specialising in helping patients to manage their pain.

If you are coming in for an operation or require an admission into one of our hospitals,  we are there to provide expert help, support and advice for the management of your pain.   

If you are suffering with chronic pain your GP may decide to refer you to one of our chronic pain clinics at St Bartholomew’s Hosptial or Whipps Cross University Hospital, or the Tower Hamlets Persistent Pain Service at Mile End Hospital. 

Our clinics offer a wide range of options to help you manage your chronic pain including; self management advice, medication advice, injection therapy, psychological support, physiotherapy, a pain management programme, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), acupuncture, and Qutenza, a novel treatment for helping to reduce nerve pain.

We also have a wide range of multidisciplinary (more than one specialist) clinics and specialist services to help you manage more complex pain conditions. These include conditions such as headache and abdominal pain, the need to take long-term opioids and if your GP or hospital specialist feels you may be considered for spinal cord or occipital nerve stimulation.

Why choose us

We are proud to be considered as one of the leading tertiary care pain centres in the UK. Due to the unique services we provide, we have a large catchment area with patients coming from the local area in east London to a more wider area across the country.

Ever year, we see on an average 1050 new outpatients. Our current waiting time is approximately  six weeks. 

We have a patient centred approach and we have access to the newest developments in the field of pain medicine and work closely with industry to bring in new technology to manage our patients. The patient will be assessed comprehensively and an individualised management plan will be initiated. 

We offer advice on a number of pain management techniques including self-management, patient education, medications, interventions, neuromodulation and a variety of other pain management techniques such as TENS, acupuncture, capsaicin 8% patch application, physiotherapy and psychology.

The service is consultant-led and we are actively involved in education and training of junior doctors, medical students and nursing staff and are also actively involved in research. 

The pain unit also includes the Barts Neuromodulation Unit, which is a specialist service offering a variety of neuromodulation techniques such as convensional spinal cord stimulation, newer non-parasthesia based stimulation, dorsal root ganglion stimulation and occipital nerve stimulation. We work closely with the neurosurgical and neurology team to provide the service  to the highest standard.
 
The Pain Anaesthesia Research Centre (PARC) is the research wing of the pain unit.  

It is involved is high quality research and is one of the leading pain research units in the UK.

For patients

The Pain Management Service aims to deliver a full pain management service using options that best meet the needs of our patients.

Services we offer

  • Inpatient pain management – offers pain management help and advice to patients admitted to hospital for surgery or acute illness. It is a consultant- and nurse-led service that evaluates, audits and manages post-surgical and other acute inpatient pain management needs.
  • Outpatient pain management – specialises in offering help with long-term pain conditions, enabling self-management through a multidisciplinary approach.

Our patient care includes a range of diagnostic and therapeutic services, including:

  • Spinal injections including: facet joint injections and epidurals
  • Ultrasound-guided nerve injections
  • Neuromodulation including: spinal cord stimulation, dorsal root ganglion stimulation and occipital nerve stimulation 
  • Medication review
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)
  • Pain Psychology
  • Pain Management Programme (PMP)
  • Quantitative sensory testing (QST), in collaboration with the Pain and Anaesthesia Research Centre 

We provide inpatient pain management services at:

  • St Bartholomew’s Hospital
  • The Royal London Hospital
  • Whipps Cross University Hospital
  • Newham University Hospital

We provide outpatient pain management services at:

  • Whipps Cross University Hospital
  • Mile End Hospital
  • St Bartholomew’s Hospital

Outpatient Pain Management

The pain service at the Barts Health NHS Trust is a multi-site service based at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, The Royal London Hospital and Whipps Cross Hospital. The team also provide outpatient services at St Leonard’s Hospital, Mile End Hospital and also at Essex Lodge community practice, which operate independently. 

We offer a number of different chronic pain services which includes the following:

General pain clinic

A number of general pain clinics are held at both St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Whipps Cross University Hospital sites where we see new patients as well as follow ups.

Neuromodulation clinic

These clinics are for the multidisciplinary assessment and management of complex patients who may be suitable for or have had a spinal cord stimulator, dorsal root ganglion stimulator or an occipital nerve stimulator.

Complex abdominal pain clinic

This clinic is led by Dr. Jayne Gallagher, clinical lead for pain medicine, along with a gastroenterologist for the assessment and management of complex abdominal pain.

Complex pain and opioid clinic

This clinic offers assessment and management for patients with complex pain who have a high medication consumption including patients on long-term opioid therapy.

Multidisciplinary Cancer pain clinic 

This clinic offers multidisciplinary complex cancer pain management. It is led by pain physicians, oncologists and palliative care consultants along with palliative care nurses, pain nurses, physiotherapists and psychologists.

Nurse led clinics

We have a large team of experienced clinical nurse specialists who offer both face-face as well as telephone follow up clinics including; transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), capsaicin 8% patch application, medication review, pain intervention review and support and education before and after neuromodulation procedures. We also offer a specialist acupuncture service.

Acupuncture

Suitable patients reviewed in the pain clinic may be referred to the outpatient acupuncture services, led and run by Ms Roberta Simons.  She has combined Traditional Chinese Acupuncture with Medical Acupuncture alongside her occupational therapy background, to deliver a holistic approach to pain management.

Psychology clinics

These clinics support chronic pain patients providing psychology support, education and coping strategies. They are run as individual psychology clinics for one-to-one patient management, multidiscipliry clinics with a pain consultant (Mile End Hospital) and also as part of neuromodulation unit. We not only run a pain management programme (PMP) for English speaking patients but are proud to be only hospital in the UK to run a Bengali Pain Exercise and Education Programme.

Physiotherapy

We offer specialist pain physiotherapy clinics providing support, advice and education to patients in relation to their chronic pain and disability. Specialist pain physiotherapy is also delivered as part of our PMP.   

Research

The pain service is actively engaged in Quality Improvement (QI) and towards that has a number of on-going QI projects. We regularly present our work at local, national and international meetings and are well received.

The service has close links with the Pain and Neurosurgical Research Department and provides an invaluable opportunity for trainees in Pain Medicine, Neurosurgery and Anaesthesia.

The Pain and Anaesthesia Research Centre (PARC) at Barts Health is affiliated to William Harvey Institute at Queen Mary University London and also offers substantial research support to the pain and neuromodulation team.  PARC is directed by Dr Vivek Mehta and is supported by a number of consultants, research scientists, research fellows, research nurse and research assistants. PARC is able to offer quantitative sensory testing as a research and clinical tool, in addition to laboratory-based studies in  inflammatory and immune markers and PET scans (in collaboration with nuclear medicine). Research interests at PARC include investigating new technologies, phenotyping and improving current care.  For further information on current research studies, please see the link below.

Key contacts

Key contacts at the Pain Management Service
St Bartholomew's and The Royal London Hospital

(Contact via pain secretaries on  0203 765 8872/8876/8878)

Whipps Cross Hospital

(Contact via pain secretaries using Whipps Cross switchboard and ex. 5826 and ex. 5360)

Newham University Hospital

(Contact via via anaesthetic secretary on 0207 363 8118 (Mon/Tues and Fri only)

  • Charlotte Guest - Lead Pain Management CNS 
  • Helen Bonar - Pain Management CNS 
  • Akorfa Fiamavle - Pain Management CNS 
  • Mirja Shaw - Pain Management CNS 
  • Kirstie Emmerson –Pain management CNS
  • Athina Karavasopoulou - Pain Management CNS / Research Nurse 
  • Joanne Lascelles- Neuromodulation CNS
  • Dr Jayne Gallagher - Consultant in pain medicine, clinical lead for pain management at Barts Health NHS Trust 
  • Dr Vivek Mehta - Consultant – Pain Medicine, director of the Pain and Anaesthesia Research Centre 
  • Dr Alastair Mulcahy - Consultant – Acute Pain and Anaesthetics 
  • Dr Serge Nikolic - Consultant – Pain and Anaesthetics 
  • Dr Saowarat Snidvongs - Consultant – Pain and Anaesthetics 
  • Dr Kristin Ullrich - Consultant – Pain and Anaesthetics, lead for inpatient pain services 
  • Dr Shankar Ramaswamy - Locum Consultant – Pain and Anaesthetics
  • Theresa Wodehouse – Principle Scientist
  • Georgina Wilson – Trial Co-ordinator Neuromodulation Studies
  • Alia Ahmad – Trial Co-ordinator NIHR Studies
  • Roberta Simons- Acupuncturist
  • Lisa White – Lead Pain Management CNS 
  • Samsher Somauroo - Pain Management CNS
  • Razina Islam - Trainee Pain Management CNS
  • Dr Jessica Hoyle - Consultant – Acute Pain and Anaesthetics 
  • Dr Norman Kufakwaro - Consultant – Pain Medicine
  • Dr Fiona Murray - Consultant – Acute Pain and Anaesthetics
  • Rizniya Latheef - Pain Management CNS 
  • Lilly Ogundiran - Trainee Pain Management CNS
  • Dr Jude Oronsaye - Consultant – Pain and Anaesthetics

Useful Links

Patient information

For clinicians

Every year, the Pain Management Clinic sees an average of 1050 new outpatients. Referring a patient to the Pain Management Clinic is straight forward.

Usually the patient will fall into two categories, acute pain or chronic pain, also referred to as persistent pain.  

Patients suffering with chronic/persistent pain are seen at our outpatient clinics which are based at St. Bartholomews Hospital and Whipps Cross Hospital.  We are only allowed to accept referrals of patients to these clinics from a GP.  

There are two ways we can receive a referral from a GP.  

  • The first is via Choose and Book now known as the NHS e-Referral Service, where the GP completes the referral online which goes directly to Central Appointments to deal with.  
  • The second is a referral letter sent directly to the correct consultant/department to be processed and booked in.  Addresses can been found below.  

It is important that any previous relevant investigations, e.g. MRI scans, as well as an up-to-date medication list, are included within the referral letter, as failure to do so causes considerable delays with patient management and diagnosis/treatments being planned.

Pain Management Service
St. Bartholomew’s Hospital,
West Smithfield,
London, 
EC1A 7BE.
Tel: 0203 765 8872 / 8876 / 8878
e-Fax: 0203 465 6838

Pain Management Service
Whipps Cross Hospital,
Whipps Cross Road,
Leytonstone,
London,
E11 1NR
Tel direct line: 0208 535 6885
Fax: 0208 535 6491

Tower Hamlets Persistent Pain Service 
Mile End Hospital,
Bancroft Road
E1 4DJ
Tel: 020 8223 8274
Fax: 020 8223 8279