A few words from Dr Thomson, a consultant in Pain Management and Neuromodulation at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals

The Painful Truth campaign aims to drive better understanding of chronic pain and highlight its impact on sufferers so that we can work towards a better outlook for people with chronic pain. It provides healthcare professionals with an opportunity to gain insights into their patients’ perspective so they can evaluate the true challenge of chronic pain facing us all.

This European survey has revealed that despite receiving several treatments and in some cases several surgeries, many patients continue to suffer with their severe chronic pain on a daily basis

We need to see an improvement in the way people with chronic pain are managed.

I often see patients who for many years (on average 7 years) have been unsuccessfully managed with physical therapy, pharmacological treatment or surgery, despite the availability of non-medicinal options such as rechargeable spinal cord stimulation (SCS). SCS may in the longer term not only improve the sufferer’s pain, but may also reduce the burden on the health economy by getting the right treatment to the right individual at the right time. Unfortunately many sufferers have to see their doctor several times before they are referred to a specialist and unless sufferers see the right specialists, it is unlikely they will be informed of all the options available.

I hope that this campaign will encourage people with chronic pain, their friends and family as well as healthcare professionals and policy makers, to look at chronic pain in a new way and be motivated to make a positive change to the process and resources of providing care. I am optimistic that this initiative will lead to improved awareness and understanding for people with chronic pain across Europe.