Pain clinic Perth
Your first visit to a pain clinic in Perth
Pain clinic Perth
Your first consultation at a pain clinic
So, you have booked your first consultation at Pain Specialists WA – that’s a first step! Before you come and see us, make sure to check your email inbox and complete the patient questionnaire. These forms are important so we can learn about your symptoms or condition beforehand and use our time during consultation more efficiently.
“For example, we need to know which medications you have already taken, or which ones you are currently taking. If you have had a scan taken, we need to know the name of the radiology centre so we can look up your scans.”
This basic information helps us to focus on in-depth questions and discuss your history during consultation.
Pain assessment during first consultation
A consultation typically lasts about 30 to 45 minutes. During this time, I will ask a lot of questions about your pain, your social circumstances, your work, your mood; we may even discuss topics that may seem not relevant but sometimes there is a link and we’ll need to get to the bottom of it.
“Your pain is yours, not someone else’s. I need to put myself in your shoes and know how you feel so I understand you and can diagnose your condition to the best of my abilities.”
Almost always we’ll perform a physical examination too. This step allows us to accurately diagnose your condition and develop a custom treatment plan.
Not everyone will need imaging scans, but some investigations like an MRI, bone scan, CT scan, ultrasound or x-rays can be ordered and may further help us to diagnose your condition.
Pain clinic treatment
Your first treatment at a pain clinic
Some standard procedures you need to know of
Many patients think they will get an injection when they visit a pain specialist. But that is not always the case. Sometimes your pain resolves when you change a few habits that are causing the pain.
If you need an injection, the treatment will be tailored to your individual circumstances. Injections typically are given in a hospital theatre under twilight sedation; that is a light anaesthetic that keeps you asleep and relaxed during the procedure.
You will receive a letter from us that explains everything you need to know prior to your procedure. Each hospital has their own specific guidelines; in general they look like this:
- The hospital will ask you to complete an online hospital admission form
- They will call or text you a day before the procedure to inform you about the admission time and fasting guidelines
- They’ll ask you to shower with chlorhexidine body wash (if you are not allergic to chlorhexidine) on the morning of the procedure
- If you are taking blood-thinning medications or supplements (like fish oil or kriel oil), you may need to stop using these. This is something that will come up during consultation so you will be well-prepared.
Depending on the anaesthetist, you may get a phone call or receive a form to fill out. This is to inform you about the anaesthetic and possible side-effects. If you don’t get a form or phone call from the anaesthetist, you will definitely meet them just before your procedure.
About the pain injection
Here’s the good news! The actual procedure doesn’t take very long. It can be very quick – as quickly as 10 minutes. In some cases, it may take 1 to 2 hours but on average, I would say, a procedure takes about 20 minutes.
One of the benefits of twilight anaesthesia is that you recover quickly from it.
“You will wake up in the recovery room and be moved to a transit lounge where you will have something to eat and drink. Once your vital signs are all okay and you are able to walk and go to the toilet you will be discharged. This usually takes around 2 hours, though it can vary from person to person.”
After the pain injection
Due to the twilight sedation, you’ll be unable to drive or operate machinery for 24 hours. You must be accompanied by an adult on the first night of your procedure.
There is no need to rest! Stay active but take it easy for the first day.
“If you need to rest, I will tell you but in general we want you to carry on as normal.”
Especially after a facet joint injection, you must remain active and do everything as normal from the moment you are discharged from the hospital. Facet joint injections are diagnostic injections and the effect of that may not last beyond 16 hours.
“So do the things that usually are painful so I know how much the facet joint injection helped.”
Sometimes pain may get worse. For example, pain flare up is very normal after a rhizotomy. In that case, take an extra painkiller. If you feel very worried, contact your GP or call Pain Specialists WA.
As its name suggests, chronic pain is chronic. Hence the recovery may take time. Immediate change in the pain level may not be possible but by perseverance, things may change and pain can get better.
“Sometimes, things don’t recover quickly, but by life modifications, perseverance, and following medical recommendations, chronic pain can be managed and people can function again.”
I may not be able to cure your pain but we can find solutions to make your life better and make you functional
Get in touch - Pain clinic Perth
Get in touch
Pain is more than just discomfort; it can disrupt your life. A pain specialist is specifically trained and educated to look closely on what is going on.
If you’re ready to explore how we can help you manage your pain, we invite you to book an appointment with us today – your first step towards a life with less pain