Pediatric Pain Rehabilitation Center
Dealing with a chronic pain diagnosis can be overwhelming for both the child and the family. Searching for treatment options and choosing the one that is best for your child can be an additional burden to families already under tremendous stress. An interdisciplinary team approach to pain treatment (physical therapy, occupational therapy, psychology, nursing and MD management) has been proven to be the most effective in helping children return to their normal lives.
The Mayo Family Pediatric Pain Rehabilitation Center at Children’s Hospital Boston is an intensive interdisciplinary rehabilitation program that serves the needs of children and adolescents with chronic musculoskeletal and neuropathic pain. Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), also known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), is the most common diagnosis given to children referred to our center.
For children and adolescents with CRPS/RSD, there’s strong evidence for effectiveness of a treatment program that combines intensive physical therapy with cognitive-behavioral therapy,
Charles Berde, MD, chief of Pain Medicine at Children’s and executive director of the Pediatric Pain Rehabilitation Center.
The Pediatric Pain Rehabilitation Center is the most comprehensive stand-alone, day hospital program of its kind in the United States, offering intensive rehabilitation to children and adolescents who have not responded to traditional outpatient treatment. Participants are typically between 7 and 18 years old and receive daily occupational, psychological and physical therapy sessions.. Additionally, our center offers children one and a half hours per day of academic study hall time to complete necessary school work.
The 2500-square-foot space, on the ground floor of Boston Children's Hospital at Waltham, includes:
- bio-behavioral therapy rooms
- private physical therapy rooms
- a physician consult room
- a functional training area
- a therapeutic pool
- an activity room
Since the opening of the Pain Treatment Service at Children’s in 1986, we have seen more than 750 children and adolescents with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome/ Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy.
Innovations and research
Researchers from Children’s, McLean Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital are investigating the effect of CRPS/RSD on child and adolescent brains using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). “Pain is unique in kids,” says David Borsook, MD, a co-author of the study. “We’re exploring how the brain changes or adapts, both when pain persists and when pain resolves.” This may provide a previously unavailable window into the central nervous system changes of challenging chronic pain disorders.