As a member of Pain UK we would like to post this information should anyone be interested in being involved;
The Pain, Palliative and Supportive Care Review Group (PaPaS) is seeking a consumer referee for a new review titled, Psychological therapies for the management of chronic neuropathic pain in adults
Psychological treatments for chronic pain involving damage or disease to nerves responsible for pain
Many people experience pain that goes away within three months but, for some, the pain continues.
When this 'chronic' pain involves damage to nerves, sometimes from injury or a disease, we call the pain neuropathic. Neuropathic pain is increasingly common but current treatments help only a minority of people. Following unsuccessful surgical or pharmacological treatment, people with chronic pain may be offered psychologically-based rehabilitation to improve their quality of life. While this can help people with other types of chronic pain, there was no review of this treatment for neuropathic pain alone.
In this review, we are interested in whether psychological treatments improve pain, distress, and disability in people with chronic neuropathic pain. We searched the academic literature to March 2015. Studies had to describe randomised controlled trials of psychological interventions for chronic neuropathic pain. We found only two. These included 105 participants: one trial of 61 people with pain from spinal cord injury and the other of 44 people with burning mouth syndrome.
The trials were of low to medium quality. We were not able to put the two trials together because the experiences of people with spinal cord injury or burning mouth are too different from each other. On their own, the trials were too small for us to undertake any statistical analysis. In summary, the findings are that the first (for spinal cord pain) found no clear benefit of treatment, and the second provided no useful data. We conclude that there is no evidence of any quantity or quality that will help practitioners and patients to decide whether to use these treatments.
Based on evidence from mixed chronic pain conditions, there is a strong case for the relevance of psychological treatments in supporting patients with these painful, distressing, and disabling conditions. It is surprising that there are not more trials and with larger populations. We have to start somewhere.
We suggest that there should be randomised controlled trials of cognitive behavioural treatments for adults with peripheral diabetic neuropathic pain. We also suggest that there should also be trials for adults with postherpetic neuralgia, and for HIV painful neuropathy. There may be a case to be made for other conditions, such as spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis.
If you are a Patient or Carer with personal experience of this topic area, and would like to take part in this important process, please contact using email below to request the checklist and full review
We assign one or two Consumer Referees to each review on a first-come-first-served basis.We ask that the checklist is returned within 2 weeks. If this date is not suitable to you, please suggest an alternative date
We send a copy of the final published review to the consumer referee along with the peer referee comments and, where possible, the response from the authors to these comments
To find out more about being a Consumer Referee, check out the Cochrane website here;
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