Transition Services for Adolescents with Chronic Pain

Feb 07, 03:22 PM

Going through adolescence can be a difficult process for anyone, but for young adults with chronic pain the difficulties of these formative years can become multifaceted. With 8% of young people in the 13-18 age range affected by chronic pain (15,000 living with arthritis alone), the transition to adulthood, and the medical support that accompanies it, is an important process.

This edition was funded by a grant by the Agnes Hunter Trust

In this edition of Airing Pain we explore the challenges and successes that patients, parents and healthcare professionals encounter when entering this crucial period.

Pain management consultant Dr Mary Rose and nurse Mandy Sim of the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh speak to Paul Evans about the methods they use to make the transition into adulthood as supportive as possible, as well as the importance of educating patients, parents and schools on the biopsychosocial aspects of pain and its management.

Dr Alison Bliss, paediatric anaesthesia and chronic pain consultant at Leeds Children’s Hospital, emphasises the importance of finding a balance between cultivating independence in young-adults with pain and helping them find the support in their transitional period.

Paul also speaks to Dr. Line Caes, psychology lecturer at Stirling University, touches on the nuances in dealing with how young people see themselves in comparison to their peers and making the classroom a more accepting space.


•    Dr Mary Rose, consultant at the pain management clinic at Edinburgh’s Sick Children’s Hospital

•    Mandy Sim, pain nurse specialist at Edinburgh’s Sick Children’s Hospital pain management clinic

•    Dr Alison Bliss, consultant in paediatric anaesthesia and chronic pain at Leeds Children’s Hospital

•    Dr Line Caes, psychology lecturer at University of Stirling’s School of Natural Science, researcher in paediatric psychology and psychological aspects of children’s pain

More information:

•    Royal Hospital for Sick Children Edinburgh Charity:

•    Scottish Transitions Forum’s “Principles of Good Transition”:

•    National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance on transition services: