Pediatric Pain Management

It is the mission of UNC Children’s pain management team to aggressively manage the pain children feel from surgeries, traumas, diagnostic testing, and other medical care.

A First-of-Its-Kind Program

Established in 2009 as North Carolina’s first pediatric pain management program, UNC Children’s pain sedation and consult service (PSC) remains the only program of its kind in the region.

The service is staffed by more than a dozen board-certified pediatric anesthesiologists, two pediatric nurse practitioners, and 11 pediatric specialty care sedation nurses. The team understands that managing pain is vital to your child’s long-term recovery and will expertly tailor strategies to manage your child’s with complex acute and chronic pain needs.

Services We Offer

Our team works around the clock to ensure the comfort of your child. We manage pain through a variety of methods, including nerve blocks, epidurals along the spinal column, appropriate medications, and other techniques throughout your child’s hospital stays and even beyond. Key components of our service include:

  • Perioperative Pain Management – We work closely with clinicians in all of UNC Children’s surgical specialties to proactively manage pain before, during, and after surgery through a variety of means.
  • Chronic Pain Management – Patients with chronic pain conditions include those with functional abdominal pain, cancer-related pain, sickle cell disease, and inflammatory bowel disease, among many others. We care for such children during their hospitalizations and also provide outlets for continued outpatient pain management following discharge.

You can be assured your child is in good hands. The team manages more 2,000 outpatient and inpatient sedations each year for procedures ranging from diagnostic tests and imaging to minor procedures, including:

  • Aspirations and biopsies (bone marrow, kidney)
  • Auditory brain response
  • Broviac removal
  • Dressing changes
  • Electromyography – Test to evaluate the health of muscles and the nerves that control them
  • Epidurals – A form of regional anesthesia that provide continuous pain relief to the entire body below the belly button
  • Exams under anesthesia or sedation
  • Lab draws
  • Lumbar punctures – Often called a spinal tap; common medical test that involves collecting a small sample of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) for examination
  • Penile adhesion removal
  • Peripheral nerve blocks
  • PICC line placement
  • Pulmonary function tests
  • Radiological scans (MRI, CT and CT guided biopsy, PET, ictal bone, and MIBG) 
  • SAM exams (sexual abuse)
  • Suture removal
  • Wound debridement – Removal of dead, damaged, or infected tissue

Contact Us:

If you have questions about UNC Children’s pain management services, please contact us at 919-966-5136.

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