Hello, I’m new to this community and wonder if anyone has experience of the 4 week INPUT pain management residential course at St Thomas’ hospital. I’m on the waiting list for it.
Hello Jaydi and you are most welcome.
I have a close friend doing the residential course at St T late January. She is doing 3 weeks...is it the same course?
I always feel every chronic pain person should do this!! It helps so much. Teaching you how to manage your pain, pacing and discussing in groups. Talks about drugs and there affects. There would bits you hadn't thought of, bits not interesting and hopefully big bits you will use.
Have they given any indication how long you will have to wait?
Thank you so much for replying. I only heard about the course last Friday from my pain clinic consultant in Kent - I’d been waiting for 6 months to see this particular doctor. The suggestion was unexpected and I only know what he told me. I certainly think we must be talking about the same course. He thought I’d stay there Sunday to Thursday then go home and go back the next Sunday for 4 weeks consecutively. Perhaps that accounts for the difference in length.
I’ve no idea how long I’ll wait - quite a while I suspect. Meanwhile I have a book to read: Manage Your Pain by Dr Michael Nicholas which I’m told the course is based on and the topics you mentioned are all in there.
Perhaps your friend will post her experience. Good luck to her and thanks again. x
I’m Shirley - said friend! Welcome, but I’m sorry you need to be here.
I’ll be attending the 3 week residential programme from 29th Jan. I’ll be in from Sun eves to fri late afternoon every week for 3 weeks.
Previously they have held 2 programs - the Neuromodulation one for folk who are being assessed for spinal cord stimulation implants. Although I had an SCS permanent implant in Jan 2016 I was assessed as not needing the course. I was already doing much of what they were including and after 42 years in the chronic pain management system I’m pretty knowledgeable sadly!!
I also live in Kent, in Tunbridge Wells. What area are you in?
If I can help at all please let me know.
Wishing you well
Hi Shirley, Thank you so much for your reply, its great to hear from people in the know and also to get a sense of proportion - there’s always someone worse off!
I’m not far from you in the Cranbrook area attending TW hospital.
I hope you gain something useful from the course and will let me know what its like and how you get on.
Kind regards x
I attended the 2 week neuromodulation course at St Thomas' and a 3 week pain management course was being run at the same time. Some of the course contents obviously overlap with each other. It's very interesting and you will learn lots of new things and will be told that change takes a while to implement. I attended the course late June/early July and am only now just implementing some things. Your head sometimes takes a while to catch up with all that you learn. We all got on well on our course and have made a Facebook group to keep in touch and that has provided us with support when we've needed it as we all suffer from chronic pain and know how it feels.
I attended an appointment in late April and could've attended a course in May but was unable to for personal reasons but I attended as mentioned above in late June/early July so hopefully you will not have long to wait.
Hello mamahill, how kind of you to reply with such useful info. Its the pain management course I’m destined for. I’m so pleased and surprised to see it might not be too long a wait and glad to hear you all gained from the course.
Can I ask you what are the living arrangements at the hospital, if you know what I mean?
When I went we shared a flat with one other person - usually from your course. The accommodation is a little tired but functional. Our flat didn't have a lounge so my flatmate and I had chats in the corridor or in the kitchen. The flats have a kitchen with a microwave and fridge and you can either take your own food up with you or get some in the foyer of St Thomas or depending on your mobility there are other places to buy food nearby. There are 2 showers and one loo in the flat which are cleaned every day.You have to do your own washing up. You have your own room with a lockable door. The flats have a double/queen sized bed, a table and chair, a wardrobe, an easy chair and a dressing table with a fan.As it was summer, we sat in the gardens for a chat after the course ended or later in the evening after we'd eaten. The flats were very hot when I was there but that might be a blessing if you go in the next few months. You must be prepared for it to be noisy although Big Ben won't be chiming whilst you're there. Gassiott House is located near the A&E entrance and obviously ambulances are coming and going 24 hours a day. I thought I'd gone deaf it was so quiet when i came home at the weekend so you do get used to the hustle and bustle if you are not used to it.
If there's anything else, you want to know just ask and I'll do my best to answer through my Gabapentin fog haha
Thank you mamahill, you’ve completely answered all my concerns.
I understand the gabapentin problem, I used to take pregabalin but had to wean myself off as I couldn’t function.
I have duloxetine now - not a huge help with pain but do help mood.
I hope you continue to benefit from the course, I’ll certainly address any further questions to you.
Hi again Jaydi,
I love Cranbrook! A very dear friend of mine lives there.
A big part of the program is devoted to psychological aspects. I have discovered a workbook on neuroplastix.com which works on the principle that the pain circuits in the brain which are so highly developed in us chronic pain folk can be ‘rewired’ to reduce the pain.
My attitude to pain has changed as a result of working with this - definitely worth a read and in my opinion understanding the Neuroscience definitely empowers.
Wow thanks, I’ll have a look at that website, we never stop learning!
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