Optimizing the Management of Pain and Irritability in Children with Severe Neurological Impairment (PIUO)


Anne-Mette Hermansen


Children born with severe brain-based developmental disabilities frequently experience persistent unexplained periods of pain and irritability, often compounded by a limited capacity to communicate their distress. Here, we have designed a systematic approach to address the management of the children’s pain with the goals of reducing pain symptoms, improving the day-to-day lives of the child and family, and simplifying treatment options for clinicians.

Research theme:
BRIGHT Supports: Projects to integrate mental health into care

Age range: 
0.5–18 years

Start date:
April 2017

Principal Investigators: 
Dr. Hal Siden, BC Children's Hospital & University of British Columbia
Dr. Tim Oberlander, BC Children's Hospital & University of British Columbia



A small change to the way we do things can make a big difference for patients

The Pathway is a simple idea; but sometimes the simplest ideas require the most proof because they challenge previous ideas. We need to a thorough study to prove that a simple change in care delivery can make a big difference in pain management.

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We have investigators across the country and a Family Advisory Committee helping as well

Our study investigators include Dr. Tammie Dewan at BC Children’s Hospital in Vancouver; Dr. Vithiya Gnanakumar at Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary; Dr. Julia Orkin at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto; and Dr. Christina Vadeboncoeur at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa.

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