"A distressing and disappointing experience"

About: Derriford Hospital / Pain Management

(as the patient),

My recent health care experience concerns a Pain Management Clinic in the South West. I am sorry to say that I found the experience upsetting, bizarre, and the outcome disappointing.

I feel I was not listened to. My responses both on the 'tick-box' questionnaire and verbal were mostly ignored, discounted or misinterpreted. I had the impression that this was in order to fit preconceived ideas about my physical condition and and my state of mind, and also to fit a preconceived diagnosis of a condition which I am sure I do not have.

I suffer from chronic pain, which is often severe. The cause is a serious back injury and major back surgery, as confirmed by many doctors, the surgeon, and my GP. I had hoped, as it was a Pain Clinic, for some discussion, help and advice on pain-relief and pain management techniques. Sadly, there was none, apart from an admonition to 'improve my mood' and a referral to a 'psychologist'.

Assumptions were made about my physical and mental state which are simply not true. I found the pain doctor to be patronising, disbelieving and dismissive of my views and responses and of the pain I experience daily.

I am in my sixties and all in all, it was a distressing and disappointing experience.

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Response from Genny Turner, Senior Quality Facilitator, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Good morning Katerina,

I am so sorry to hear that you are not happy with the service that has been provided by the Pain Management team.

I would appreciate it if you would be kind enough to contact our Patient Advise Liaison Service (PALS). The team will be able to take more identifiable details from you.

please call 01752 432564 or email:- plh-tr.PALS@nhs.net

This will enable us to contact the Pain Management service to establish a way forward for you.

Best wishes


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