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St Vincent’s Hospital clinic easing burdens
Pain-free: Nursing managers Scott Cameron, Karen Zillman and Usha Prasad standing in the operating theatre at the St Vincent’s Private Hospital Centre for Pain Management which has improved life for many pain sufferers. Photo: Emilie Ng

St Vincent’s Hospital clinic easing burdens

DOCTORS and nurses at St Vincent’s Private Hospital Brisbane have  witnessed an “increased quality of life” in patients using the new Centre for Pain Management.

Since opening in July, the centre has implanted more than 30 high-frequency spinal cord stimulators that have reduced debilitating neck and back pain.

These stimulators have only been approved in Australia and Europe.

St Vincent’s was one of the first private health services to use the high-frequency spinal cord stimulators.

The centre also offers specialist assessment and medication advice, considering not only physical, but also patients’ psychological needs.

Pain management director Dr Frank Thomas said St Vincent’s provided the highest quality service across Brisbane’s private and public health sector.

“We’re very excited about the Pain Centre and the potential it has,” he said.

“We’re also seeing a diverse range of patients, and we will soon expand our services to provide management for head ache, neck pain, back pain, nerve pain, and others as we go.

“Some patients have gone from severe pain, from a seven to ten out of ten scale, and gone down to one to two or even no pain.”

More funds are required for the hospital to continue “leading the way” in pain management.

To raise funds for new equipment in the centre, the hospital this month launched its annual Spring Appeal.

St Vincent’s general manager Cheryl Royle said the appeal would be an important step in ensuring the centre continued providing the highest quality service for pain sufferers.

“We have had a phenomenal response from patients who have had those implants, where they have suffered for many years, often, and then the following day when you see them down on the ward, they are so thrilled to say that they have no pain,” she said.

“Since opening the theatre the doctors are now looking for some new infusion pumps and some new sonography equipment, but it’s all fairly costly.

“We’d like to lead Australia in what we do.

“This hospital has been in establishment for some time now, and it’s really the foundation of the Sisters of Charity.

“Pain management is a much needed service in the community, and we’re hoping that we can help people as much as we can.”

Fundraising enquiries can be made to Gillian Reid on (07) 3240 1266.

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