Device Orientation

New, Self-management Toolkit

NEW, Self-Management Toolkit

Helping people with long-term health conditions, start to self-manage

NEW, Self-Management Toolkit

The Self-Management Toolkit is a simple guide that gives you some handy tips and skills to help you understand and manage your long-term health condition better and get you back in the driving seat and on track. 

Going it alone 

Living with a long-term health condition, including persistent pain and going it alone as I found out, can be tricky and you may need some help at times. 

Where do you get help from? Well, help and  support can come from your family, friends, healthcare teams, work colleagues and the Self-Management. It’s important to get the right support in place. 

Make sure members of your healthcare professional team are experts or familiar with the pain self-management concept.

How to download the digital versions

  • For Apple users please download via this link 
  • For Android users please download via this link

The Next Pain Toolkit Online Café

Next Pain Toolkit Café

Wed, August 19, 2020

Next Pain Toolkit Café

Like most Cafe's, just drop in and out to suit you. What will the conversation be about? All matters about pain self-management.

What you will need to take part? Computer, tablet or mobile phone with a camera which also an internal or external microphone. So people use headphones or earphones.


Please can you make sure, you are in a quiet area (with no background noise) so not to distract others attending the Cafe.

If you are not sure about anything, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Pain Toolkit interviews

Pain Toolkit interviews 2020

Below are all the Pain Toolkit interviews from 2020 so far

Pain Toolkit interviews 2020

Below are all the Pain Toolkit interviews of 2020 so far

Up-and-coming interviews

  • Tess Sanderson (Yoga Laughter) 18th March
  • Kim Littlemore will be talking about Pocket Medic Film...A digital platform delivering high quality series of health information films ‘prescribed’ by clinicians to support their patients ’ in managing their health. 22nd April 

New Toolkit on Google Play

New Toolkit on Google Play

Pain Toolkit for retired Footballers, who live with long-term pain

New Toolkit on Google Play

This Pain Toolkit is for retired footballers (men and women) who live with persistent, long-term pain.

You can pre-order the book via the Google Play store here.

The burden of back pain

The burden of back pain

Back pain is a massive problem which is badly treated

The burden of back pain

Back pain is a massive problem which is badly treated. Why are better approaches to helping sufferers so slow to spread? 

Interesting article in the Economist about Back Pain, which I was asked to contribute to ... click here to read more.

If you have back pain, please remember I run Pain Toolkit educational online workshops ... click here for more information.

Why the Pain Toolkit is going Green

Why the Pain Toolkit is going Green

So why is the Pain Toolkit going green?

For several reasons:

  • Cut down on paper usage 
  • Reduce the need for travel for me and others

So what have we and what will be changing

  • Pain Toolkit Booklets
    • All the different versions can now be bought as an eBook via iBooks (Scott from Ryde Digital is adapting the Pain Toolkit Store to accommodate them. I will also be uploading them to GoogleBooks and Kindle over the coming weeks.
  • Pain Toolkit Workshops
    • Unless commissioned by an organisation to run a face to face Pain Toolkit workshop for either healthcare professionals or patients, all workshops will be run online, so to cut down on travel costs for the Pain Toolkit and Participants.
    • The next workshops are on:
    • Healthcare Professional Saturday 31st August 2019 
    • Patient Saturday 28th September 2019


Pain Toolkit VR App

Pain Toolkit VR App

As you know, the Pain Toolkit is very much a 'can-do and innovative' organisation, so we are pleased to announce, we are developing a brand new Pain Toolkit Virtural Reality APP

We have teamed up with Floris and Freek from SyncVR from the Nederlands, to develop, this exciting NEW Virtural Reality (VR) App using the Pain Toolkit concept.

So what different about this App? It is:

  • Interactive with others from around the world.
  • Educational and having fun at the same time.
  • Visual.
  • Conbines the Pain Toolkit Game with the Pain Toolkit videos.
  • Players can suggest new levels, as to what they would like to learn.

Watch the promotional video, to show how we make learning about pacing fun and interesting

What we need are people or organisations to financially support the project and become partners in this exciting project.

Interested and would like more information, then contact Pete via the website

Pain Toolkits NOW available as eBooks… on iBooks:

Pain Toolkits NOW available as eBooks… on iBooks:

The following Pain Toolkit eBook publications are now available on iBooks.


Why we need to move the pain self-management along.

Why we need to move the pain self-management along.

I've been involved now in pain management for some 20 years. Yes, it has changed somewhat over years, but it now seems to have slowed down.

Watching and reading information on Social Media, information can get confusing.

My main issue is why Medical Schools are still only teaching the medical model of care, within their curriculums and not including the pain self-management one.

Having asked around recently, if there are dedicated degrees or qualifications for learning pain self-management, well, there doesent seem to be any.  This cannot be right, as many healthcare professionals will mainly be seeing people with persistent pain.

The Pain Revolution guys in Australia seem to be switched on, regarding pain management education for both healthcare professionals and patients, so do we need to duplicate their concept?

So it would useful, to have a Big Global CONVERSATION, where both healthcare professionals and people self-managing their pain can discuss how we shift things along

Interested? Then let me know via the website 

Once I have some names, I can then set a date and time around April, so hopefully suit everyones time zone.

Come on, let's make a difference.


Dr Tim Williams 10 Top Tips for managing pain - a guide for GP’s

Dr Tim Williams 10 Top Tips for managing pain - a guide for GP’s

Dr Tim Williams 10 Top Tips for managing pain - a guide for GP's

  1. Self-Managing with confidence is the aim of management.
  2. Expect persistent pain to be a Long Term Condition, so you can take your time. 
  3. Listen to the ‘pain story’ from start to finish. (appointment 1) 
  4. Form with patient- person centred goals for their future. (appointment 2 and onwards) 
  5. Metaphors can be used to explain persistent pain concepts to patients.
  6. Analgesia should be kept simple and effective. 
  7. Neuropathic pain may require special attention. 
  8. Ask about life – It’s not all about the pain. Consider sleep, mood, activity etc. 
  9. Give strong opiates with extreme caution and careful review. 
  10. Encourage continuity with a limited number of involved health care professionals.



What, or when was it, you had that…. Aha Moment? When you realised the medication model wasn’t working, for patients?

What, or when was it, you had that…. Aha Moment? When you realised the medication model wasn’t working, for patients?

Shoutout to Healthcare Professional, who support people with pain...

What, or when was it, you had that.... Aha Moment. When you reaslised the medical model of care, you were taught it, wasn't really useful, for people who live with persistent pain?

So why am I asking...

In last few months, I've been getting a few of requests from healthcare professionals asking me about pain self-management and especially and when or what was the AHA! moment I had, when I stopped being a 'serial doctor and therapy shopper' and started to take more control of me and my pain. I guess they want to find out, something they missed in Med School. Perhaps they want to show their patients, managing pain is possible?

Let's get the crux of the matter

Now, we are are not born pain self-managers, we have to learn it. And I think it's the same or silmiar for healthcare professionals, because most Med Schools only teach the medical modlel of care, which really isn't usefl for people like me or the 1 in 5 around the world, who live with pain.

But there are many healthcare professionals out there looking for that AHA! moment that could help them to change, from their usual medical model support mechanisms, which are not working and want to include the self-management approach.

So this is what I think, would be useful.

I would like to develop a simple handbook (which will be free) for healthcare professionals, with simle examples from other healthcare professionals, who had a AHA! moment and incorperated the self-management model of care, into their practice.

What do I need?

I need some short examples from healthcare professionals, who use the pain self-management model approach. 5 paragraphs would be excellent.

So all you healthcare professionals, promoting self-managment out there, can you send me your text (and a photo would be nice) and I will include, with a Pdf Booklet.  

Also, as its going to me your handbook, can you send me ideas for the title of it.

Please send me your text to me here 


In the meantime, if you would like to learn some pain self-management skills, to help your patients, then why not attend the online and interactive Pain Toolkit Workshop for healthcare professionals.

The next one is on Saturday 16th March from 10.00 - 12.30pm Click here for more information and to book.


Pete’s Story in 800 words

Pete’s Story in 800 words

My story is very typical of that of a pain patient. I was, like many pain patients looking forthat magic bullet to take away the pain. Managing my pain was like playing a game of snakes and ladders – a game of luck. Most days melted into the next and I have a very poor pain self-manager. I did not exercise or generally look after my body, I ate all the wrong foods and when something went wrong with it, I expected the doctor or healthcare professional to fix me. 

My darkest day was my birthday in 1994. It was New Years Eve and by early evening, I had taken my full quota of pain medication for that day but my pain was still raging. I started to talk to the guy in the sky and said to him…”if this is what my life is going to be like, I want to get out of the taxi now. Yes I thought about ending my life by taking the rest of the medication. I didn’t get a voice from the sky, no enlightenment, no, nothing. I was on my own. What I did get, was the idea to do some stretching. I did some and the pain eased off.

The next morning, the pain came back with vengeance. I was washing my face and looking in the mirror. I looked warn out. I was. But I said to myself, I need to take some action and learn how to manage my pain and I did. I needed to put my sister Maria called…putting on your business head.

Putting on your business means, getting back in the driving seat. I need to take more charge of my pain and my life. As I wasn’t going to get a bolt of lightning for the guy in the sky, I had to get off my butt. I did.

Back Pain Support Group

I started a back pain support group in early 1993. I read somewhere, that if you want to learn something, then teach it. Well I could teach anything, as I knew nothing, but I knew I could learn from others and the speakers I invited along.

One of those speakers was Amanda Williams from the INPUT Pain Management programme. She told the group about pacing, how I could do more throughout the day, with the pain increasing and how stretching and exercise could reduce pain. 

This is what I was reaching for, something to get myself, back in the driving seat. I signed up straight away, but had to wait 18months to get on the programme. It was worth the wait.

My Turning Point!

In July 1996 I attended the INPUT Pain Management Programme (PMP) London.  It was described to me as a programme that could help me to increase my confidence and mobility and provide me with the pain toolkit of skills to self-manage my pain. I thought this was finally something that could help me turn the corner and help me live with my pain.  

What the PMP gave me was the skills and tools to manage my pain, BUT I had to do the work.

I’m pleased to say, that 1997, I haven’t had to take any pain medication to manage my back pain. It was all down to learning how to self-manage my pain, using the skills and tools, from the PMP.

As I’ve become an older person, I of course now have older persons problems, like arthritis and prostate cancer. I still use the PMP skills from 1996, to manage these new challenges in my life and still not taking any pain medications.

Getting back to work

I have been back in full time work since 2000 and to date I have never had a day off sick. Again, all down to the pain management programme. 

Work for me these past 23years has been promoting pain self-management to others with persistent pain and healthcare professionals via writing booklets, programmes, presenting at pain conference and running workshops.

Take home message to people reading this.

  • My messages are simple. 
  • Get yourself back in the driving seat
  • Find a healthcare professional, who know about pain self-management
  • Set goals and make action plans.
  • Learning about pacing your daily activities
  • Have a setback plan, in case you overdo it and get problems. And you will
  • Learn the right stretches and exercises that are right for you. See a Physiotherapist to find out the right ones for you. Oh and by the way, do them daily.
  • Have fun and learn to chill out, relax
  • Last one…If I can learn how to self-manage pain, then so can you.

Good luck. 





The 1minute Pain Toolkit Interview Challenge

The 1minute Pain Toolkit Interview Challenge

Take part in a 1minute Interview, explaining why self-managing pain is important. This challenge is open to both people with persistent pain and healthcare professionals.

The 1minute Pain Toolkit Interview Challenge.

Take part in a 1minute Interview, explaining why self-managing pain is important.

This challenge is open to both people with persistent pain and healthcare professionals.

Let's see who has taken up the challenge...

Physical Therapist Michelle Morrow from Michigan, US. In this video, Michelle explains the importance of pain self-management.

Person with persistent pain Marion Jones, a person with persistent pain. Marion talks about how she manages here persistent pelvic pain, things she still has problems with, like pacing.

MSK therapist Ben Cormack Once again, excellent messages from Ben, reiterating, that helping and supporting the person to returning to their chosen activities is important.

Physical Therapist James Stark, James talks about how he is training up other healthcare professionals, to promote the pain self-management message to their patients. He also gave important messages to patients about choosing the right healthcare professional. Also check out James Facebook page called Aphora - Pain Education

Mandy Wilson Pain Nurse Another excellent interview with Mandy, where she provides excellent and easy to understand pain self-management information for patients and also healthcare professionals.

In this interview, Lissanthea Taylor talks about the work she is involved in, supporting the Pain Revolution and the new website, PainChats 

Physiotherapist Matt Jenkinson is certainly on the ball, when it comes to pain self-management. Well worth a listen.

Movement Coach Joanne Groves really understands the pain pain self-management concept and how she promotes it, to her clients.

Tony Sachse Physical Therapist from Wisconson, USA, is really switched on with the pain self-management messages for his patients and colleagues

Interviewees coming soon are:

  • Amy Busch Eicher from the UK
  • Sophie Gwinnett from the UK
  • Andy from @ActivePlusNZ

Pain Toolkit online and interactive workshop on Saturday 16th March. For more information and to book your place, please click here 

Pain Toolkit workshop for Healthcare Professionals Saturday - 16th March 2019 10am - 12.30pm GMT (UK Time) PLUS FREE Pain Toolkit HANDBOOK FOR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS

Pain Toolkit workshop for Healthcare Professionals Saturday - 16th March 2019 10am - 12.30pm GMT (UK Time) PLUS FREE Pain Toolkit HANDBOOK FOR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS

The next Pain Toolkit 'online and interactive' workshop, for Healthcare Professionals is on Saturday 16th March 2019 from 10am - 12.30pm GMT (UK Time)

I get many requests now from Healthcare Professionals, wanting to learn a few extra pain self-management skills, to help them, to support their patients. This workshop is ideal for them.

Free 27 Page Pain Toolkit Healthcare Professional Handbook (pdf), when you attend this workshop

Workshop overveiw

  • What is pain self-management and how it can support the patient
  • How to activate patients to self-manage and promote self-management to them in time-based consultation
  • How to promote, action planning, problem solving, dealing with setbacks and self-monitoring

How the Workshop works

  • 8-10 people attend each workshop and last for 2.5 hrs
  • During the workshop, we have built in pacing breaks.
  • Each participant will be sent simple instructions about how to join the workshop There will be ample time for everyone to speak during the workshop. We want the workshop to be interactive and have time for discussion.
  • On each workshop, a PowerPoint will be used as a guide for useful information.
  • Each participant, will get a FREE Pdf of the 'Pain Toolkit Handbook for Healthcare professionals'

What you will need to take part?

Computer, tablet or mobile phone with a camera which also an internal or external microphone

How to join the workshop?

All participants will be given a dedicated login for their particular Pain Toolkit online workshop.

Cost to attend the workshop is £45.00

Please click here to book your place.

(All monies goes towards the development and maintenance of the Pain Toolkit website}


Prolonged Post-Surgical Pain in or around a Healed Wound/Scar?

Prolonged Post-Surgical Pain in or around a Healed Wound/Scar?

What’s happening?

An exciting study is now well underway at St Pancras Clinical Research looking at a new treatment to relieve prolonged pain in or around a healed scar following thoracic or abdominal surgery ie on the torso. The staff at St Pancras Clinical Research are specialists experienced in treating and researching painful conditions. 

Ipsen, a major French pharmaceutical company, has launched this study with St Pancras Clinical Research in London for patients experiencing long-term pain in or around a scar, long after the original surgical wound and the scar itself has healed. 

What does the trial involve?

This study is made up of two parts:

Initially, we do some tests to confirm that there might be the potential to benefit from the new locally administered treatment. This is done by comparing the pain relief after injections, one week apart, of local anaesthetic (lidocaine) with placebo (sham). Pain perception (rated on a scale of 0-10) is assessed up to 24-hours after each injection. Participants who ‘respond’ at this point - meaning that they experience appreciable pain relief from the local anaesthetic- will progress to the second part of the study. 

In the second part of the study, three quarters of these ‘responder’ participants will be randomised to receive either the new treatment, and one quarter will receive the placebo treatment. The placebo contains no active substances but will look and be administrated in exactly in the same way as the active treatment. This is a ‘double-blind trial’, meaning that neither subjects nor the study doctor will know who receives the placebo and who the active treatment. Prior to administering the treatment, we will perform some baseline pain measurements, and train subjects in how to use a wearable ‘Actiwatch’, which records their pain level rating over the next 16 weeks. 

Who can take part?  

All visits would take place at St Pancras Clinical Research’s clinic in central London a few minutes walk from King’s Cross Station. Reasonable travel costs will be reimbursed, and subjects who complete the trial will also receive £700 to compensate for their time. 

To take part, subjects would need to be between the ages of 18-75 and to have had surgery on the torso region involving a thoracic (chest) or abdominal (stomach) wound scar. There must be persistent (every day) pain in or around the scar and the surgery should have taken place no longer than 10 years ago. 

Find out more:

To find out more about taking part and/or to register your interest in this study, please click here

We are also conducting other studies for chronic pain conditions such as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, as well as studies for memory loss (Alzheimer’s Disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment ‘MCI’), so please have a look at the patient website for more information, please click here for more information 

New Year and thinking of getting more active?

New Year and thinking of getting more active?

New Year and thinking of getting more active? 

You are not on your own, but for us with persistent pain, we need to be organised.

As I've always advocated, getting active, stretching and exercise has really helped to keep my pain level down and in turn, not having to take any pain medications.

Handy Tip to remember...It's usual for pain levels to increase a little, when you get active, but the levels soon reduce...

Below are some handy tips

  • See a Physiotherapist, to find out what stretching / exercises are right for you
  • Set realistic goals
  • Make achievable action plans
  • Pace up your activites
  • Choose a getting active activity that you will enjoy doing (see page 17 in the Pain Toolkit booklet
    • Yoga
    • Tai Chi
    • Pilates
    • Dancing
  • Thinking of joining a gym/health club?
    • Choose a gym/health club that meets your needs and of course, friendly
    • Has trainers who understand what pain self-management is
    • Willing to show you around the equipment 
    • Dont forget to check out the NHS Fitness Studio, which is free to join. It has lots of easy to follow exercise videos for beginners
  • Have a setback plan in case you overdo it 

If I've missed any out, please let me know, so I can add to the list

The main thing is that you enjoy getting active, so you don't give up.


How I self-manage my prostate cancer

How I self-manage my prostate cancer

Back in 1996 I attended the INPUT Pain Management Programme

I didn't know it at the time, that the programme would not only help me to manage my persistent back pain, but I would be learning life-long skills for other health problems.

Back in 2016, I was dianosed with Prostate cancer (PC). I was able to use the self-management I learned on the INPUT programme to manage, my new symptoms.

I found a lot of help from a New Zealand organisation called Pinc & Steel ...and as they say..."They are here to support, guide and rehabilitate people through every stage of their treatment and recovery." 

I was very luck to meet Lou James, the founder of Pinc and Steel last December in London, when she was in the UK training other Physios about cancer rehab.

A few weeks ago Lou asked if I would do an interveiw with her, about how I manage my prostate cancer and of course I said yes.

Here is the video, which tells my story living with PC, from day one, to how I manage today (Dec 2018)

If you know of someone living with PC, please send them the video.

Massive thanks to Lou and all the other Physios around the world, who help and support others live me to overcome and self-manage.


Baby Got Back Better - Video by The Challenge Doctor Melissa Cady, D.O. @challengedoctor

Baby Got Back Better - Video by The Challenge Doctor Melissa Cady, D.O. @challengedoctor

Nice video and great way to get the Pain Management message out there

So... here's a first for me.

I never thought in a million years I would ever be in a dance video, but I am now.

Why Did Melissa Create the Baby Got Back Better Dance Video? Find out here 

Check out this NEW excellent Video by Melissa Cady the #ChalleneDoctor.

What a great way to get the Pain Management message out there.

Melissa says....

"It has been a labor of love to remind all of us that there is always hope for less pain when we have better pain education, guidance, and empowerment. But most of all, we must keep moving and minimize our fears in order to make progress in our pain journeys."

Hear Melissa's strory living with back pain here 


Operation Pain-LESS - a NEW website

Operation Pain-LESS - a NEW website

Find out how to make getting better from your operation faster and more PAIN-less

Hi I'm Dr Steve Gilbert

I am a pain specialist and anaesthetist, practicing for 32 years. I have been passionate about helping to improve understanding of pain – and what to do about it, both for healthcare workers and for the public.

Sometimes it is difficult to get the message across to doctors, nurses or physios though.

Read more and visit the site here


Pain Toolkit Online Workshop -Saturday 9th February 2019 10am - 12.30pm GMT (PLUS FREE PAIN TOOLKIT BOOKLET)

Pain Toolkit Online Workshop -Saturday 9th February 2019 10am - 12.30pm GMT (PLUS FREE PAIN TOOLKIT BOOKLET)

Interactive workshop, for people living with persistent pain

Free Pain Toolkit Booklet (hardcopy), when you sign up for this workshop

Yes the Pain Toolkit Online Workshops are back.

The next one is on Saturday 9th February 2019 10am - 12.30pm GMT (UK time)

Cost is only £25.00 and all the monies, goes towards the upkeep and maintenance of the Pain Toolkit Website

Who can attend.

Anyone from around the world, who lives with persistent pain and would like to learn some simple skills to self-manage their pain

What you will need.

You will need a computer, phone or handheld device (an iPad for example) with a built in camera and microphone.

How to book.

Please to booking link to book your place

Once you have paid and booked, we will send you a dedicated link to join the workshop on Saturday 9th February 2019 10am - 12.30pm GMT (UK time)

If you have any questions in the meantime, please contact us via this link 


British Pain Society - Position Statement on the medicinal use of cannabinoids in pain management

British Pain Society - Position Statement on the medicinal use of cannabinoids in pain management

The British Pain Society welcomes the increasing awareness and changes in government policies towards the potential use of cannabinoid preparations for the management of various chronic medical conditions including epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and pain management.

Members of The British Pain Society have occasionally come across patients who have benefited from using cannabis and acknowledge that it may have a place in pain management for a small number of carefully selected people.

However, meta-analyses of clinical studies on cannabinoids for the management of pain conclude that there is no positive evidence to support routine use in pain management.

Read more here 


Can you help the Naked Physio? @nakedphysio I will and have

Can you help the Naked Physio? @nakedphysio I will and have

Message from the Naked Physio aka Paul Lagerman

My mate and I will be competing in the Breca Swimrun Wanaka March 2019.

We are raising money for @pincandsteel cancer rehab. I have witnessed the impact cancer has on loved ones. So, we would appreciate if you could donate some coins/notes.

I've created this page because I have witnessed first hand the impact cancer can have on loved ones and their families. 

My mate and I praise the work of PINC & STEEL Cancer Rehabilitation Trust and wanted to support them for the amazing inspiration they give to people having been through or are living with cancer. 

We will be competing in a Swimrun round the banks and in the glacial waters of lake Wanaka. 

So, if you could spare a couple of dollaz, quid, euro's (or whatever currency) that would be truly appreciated. Please help me help them by giving what you can.

Please donate HERE


Ellis in Wonderland

Ellis in Wonderland

Ellis on playful living: "this is my personal library of what I've learnt so far while I'm still mischievously exploring..."

I met Ellis at the recent Games for Health event, where she was gave a presentation, on how games can help people with a health problems and can become active again and...ALSO having fun, doing so.

Check out her website here 

Also Ellis gave me a copy of her book and I started to read it at the Airport, on my way home to the UK from the Nederland's. The book is called 'Apply Play and Get Ahead of the Game.' It's a great read. 

So if you are looking for ideas about getting people moving and having fun, go a buy a copy of the book. There are hardcopies and also available online.

Ellis is also on Twitter via @ellisinwonderla

Pain Self-Management event, which has been organised by People with Persistent Pain 

Pain Self-Management event, which has been organised by People with Persistent Pain 

Now there's a thought

So, what do you think to this idea?

I hope one day I will see and attend a Pain Selfmgt event, which has been organised by People with Persistent Pain.

And where the invited 'guest speakers' are people who self-manage their pain experienced healthcare professionals in Pain Selfmgt.

Let's see if there is an interest for such an event.

If you belong to an organisation or company, who would like to sponsor or support this proposed event, please message me and help us, make this happen.

Living with pain is like…?

Living with pain is like…?

Living with pain is like...?





Counteracting a Sedentary Job Role - an important blog for people who have a sedentary job

Counteracting a Sedentary Job Role - an important blog for people who have a sedentary job

Blog by Scott Harrington

Counteracting a Sedentary Job Role - By Scott Harrington - Pain Toolkit Website Manager

Scott recognised his sedentary job role working at a desk, was having an effect on his health and of course, his life, so he decided to do something about it.

Checkout this excellent blogg by Scott here 

Pain Toolkit - Interview with Professor Stephan Schug and Chair of Anaesthesiology in Western Australia

Pain Toolkit - Interview with Professor Stephan Schug and Chair of Anaesthesiology in Western Australia

Director of Pain Medicine at the Royal Perth Hospital:

Interview with Professor Stephan Schug and Chair of Anaesthesiology in Western Australia and Director of Pain Medicine at the Royal Perth Hospital:

Wow what an excellent interview with Stephan. 

We spoke about pain self-management and what they are doing in Australia promoting pain self-management to both patients and doctors.

Veiw the video here

In the interview Stephan mentioned the website called painHealth and here is the website address 

What happens when someone downloads or prints off a free copy of the Pain Toolkit? 

What happens when someone downloads or prints off a free copy of the Pain Toolkit? 

Well let's find out.

What happens when someone downloads or prints off a free copy of the Pain Toolkit?

We are aware some organisations are offering freedowloads of the Pain Toolkit their patients and others printing off really old versions of it. I've seen some of the Pdf's and print off's and they are very old versions and look very scuffy and unprofessional.

We would like to make you aware, that ALL sales of Pain Toolkit goes towards the development and the free learning resources on the website. We get nothing for free and have to pay for it.

The Pain Toolkit is NOT sponsered by any companies, funding sources etc. It's self-supporting. 

One of our goals this year was to run

  • 10 FREE online Pain Toolkit Workshops for people with persistent pain, who do not have access to a Pain Self-Management course, programme or workshop. They may live in a rural area or have mobility problems.

This now, will not happen.

So the next time you or your organisation is tempted to print off or offer old outdated versions of the Pain Toolkit to your patients, can you please remember we offer really good discounted hardcopies of the Pain Toolkit.

For more information about how you can oder bulk orders of the Pain Toolkit, please contact me here

WATCH the Video… where Joletta Belton @MyCuppaJo Keith Medrum @keith_meldrum & myself, reflect on the @IASPPAIN #IASP2018 Congress, Boston & the NEW #IASP Pain Patient Alliance

WATCH the Video… where Joletta Belton @MyCuppaJo Keith Medrum @keith_meldrum & myself, reflect on the @IASPPAIN #IASP2018 Congress, Boston & the NEW #IASP Pain Patient Alliance

Early in September, I travelled to Boston in the USA to take part International Association Study of Pain (IASP) Congress 

I was asked to take part in a new initiative called the #IASP Pain Patient Alliance and also run a Pain Toolit workshop for Pain Docs, Researchers and industry.

Although I knew Joletta Belton (Twitter @MyCuppaJo) Keith Medrum (Twitter @keith_meldrum) via Social Media, it was a privilege to meeting them in person. It was like meeting friends I have known for many years

We made a video two weeks after the Congress, we made a video reflecting on our thoughts about the Congress and the new #IASP Pain Patient Alliance

Watch the video here

Shout to @eubanks_colleen for her help and support.

Opioid medication

Opioid medication

How can I stop taking it

There was a recent TV programme on UK TV, about opiod medication and how they are being over prescibed.

I never watched it myself, but the programme sparked a lot of interest on the new Pain Toolkit LiveChat feature on the website.

LiveChat received over 40 messages from people wanting to know more about opioid medication. Mainly wanting to learn more about it and many wanting to know how to come off of it.


So why have opiods become so popular for managing persistent pain?

Listening and talking to healthcare professionals at conferences, opioid medication was mainly developed for end of life care.  So why are used for general persistent pain like back pain and other similar problems?

My take on it is, there isn't an abundance of pain management programmes, workshops in the community or on the internet for people who live with persistent pain, so what is the GP or Pain Doctor supposed to do to help their patients? Medication is really their only tool, to turn to. So until the decision makers start to provide pain management programmes, workshops in their communities, GP's and Pain Doctors, will have to carry on prescibing opioids.

What trusted information is out there, for you to learn more.


Pain Toolkit LiveChat

Pain Toolkit LiveChat

Pain Toolkit goes live with LiveChat

Pain Toolkit LiveChat

Why LiveChat on the Pain Toolkit?

Having used LiveChat on other websites and found it helpful to find information fast, without looking all around the website.

The Pain Toolkit team thought it would be useful to try out LiveChat on the new site and already, it's become an overnight success, with around 98% of those using it, say they found it useful to get information fast.

Many using it, were asking medical and medication questions, which we cannot answer, se we have had to put a messages on the Chat, letting visitors know, we can only answer pain self-management questions

Not tried it out yet? Then have a go. As soon as you land on a page, LiveChat pops up simply asking if you need any help.

I'm going to organise dedicated LiveChats with myself and others, so watch this space.

Please remember, we cannot answer any medical, medication or treatment questions

Brand new look, to the brand new Pain Toolkit Store

Brand new look, to the brand new Pain Toolkit Store

AND new products.

Brand new look, to the brand new Pain Toolkit Store

Brand new look, to the brand new Pain Toolkit Store AND new products.

  • Pain Toolkit (hardcopy)
  • Back Pain Toolkit (pdf)
  • Goals, Action Plans & The Harley (pdf)
  • Don’t Just Stop It, Do It by Dr Tim Williams (hardcopy)
  • Pain Toolkit handbook for healthcare professionals (pdf)

Also Pdf versions of the Pain Toolkit Booklets for 

  • Australia, 
  • America, 
  • New Zealand and... 
  • Ireland

Come and vistit the Pain Toolkit Store today

Pete’s Story - IASP Conference video

Pete’s Story - IASP Conference video

Pete’s Story - IASP Conference video

Prior to me attending the International Association for the Study (IASP) of Pain Congress in Boston in September, IASP asked me if I would make a short video about my pain journey, how I self-manage my pain and the Pain Toolkit.

I talk about... 

  • my pain journey 
  • self-management 
  • teamwork
  • IASP Congress 

....oh and you get to see me on the Harley

You can watch the video here 

IASP Congress 2018 Boston

IASP Congress 2018 Boston

IASP Congress 2018 Boston

Well, what can I say...but this has been the best IASP Conference I have ever attended and the best part about it, was to meet others who are interested in and DOING and interested in pain self-management and others I have only known via social media or via a screen.

To my American friends, thank you for making me welcome.

My only disappointment, is I've only seen or heard 3 Harleys, until the last day when I saw 5 and all cops riding them

Massive shoutout to Joletta Belton and Keith Meldrum Their stories and their messages via their workshops has been massively important for others to see and hear. Apologies for the wobbly videos of their workshops. My arthritis in my hands was playing up this week, was playing up.

Also for me, the best part of these types of congress are not in the organised plenaries but the 1-1 or small group meetings with others. It's an opportunity to connect and hear from others about what they do. For me this week, it was a pleasure to meet Occupational Therapist (OT) Linda Crawford OT who gave me a better in site, as to how OT's are very useful in pain self-management. My question to the decision makers in Healthcare is...why are they not used more?

Being part of the new ISAP Patient Alliance initiative has also been important. This initiative, will play a very important part, in helping others around the world who are struggling to live with persistent pain and offer them a better way of managing it. Watch this space...

While there I did some Facebook Live interviews.

Yes I like all this self-management information, but I can’t really understand why I still have this bloody pain?

Yes I like all this self-management information, but I can’t really understand why I still have this bloody pain?

Yes I like all this self-management information, but I can’t really understand why I still have this bloody pain?

I remember back in the day, when I struggled to live with my back pain, I also struggled to understand why I still had it two years plus down the road?

Healthcare professionals never really explain to me, why the pain was going on for so long. All I was given was leaflets and explanations about my discs etc, which by the way, I didn’t really understand. 

But when I attended the INPUT Pain Management Programme in 1996, they explained to me that any injury and damage I'd had in my back, had probably healed and the pain I was getting was a pain that was still trying to tell me I had to be careful and I was still injured. In other words, it was a useless pain. It was giving me false information.

It's a bit like when someone has a hand or leg amputated, but they can still feel pain in their foot or hand. The wiring signals in their nervous system are still switched on. I guess it was a bit like that for my back pain. I was getting false readings

I had to accept that this pain could be with me for some time and we had to learn how to get on with each other. So I followed the advice and support from the pain management programme and after a couple of months the pain started to wind down and since then, me and my back pain, have got along just fine.

As I’ve become older and now have Osteoarthritis, I’m using the same self-management skills I learnt back in 1996. 

So if you are a healthcare professional reading this, please can you explain to your patients how persistent pain works first, before handing out the leaflet or other information. Thank you

Reforming MSK Practice - by #TheBigRs 5th & 6th October 2018

Reforming MSK Practice - by #TheBigRs 5th & 6th October 2018

via Physio Matters @TPMPodcast

Reforming MSK Practice - by #TheBigRs 5th & 6th October 2018

Pete says...First Special thanks to Physio Jack Chew for the invite and really pleased to take part in this Reforming MSK Practice event. Also pleased they have involved people living with persistent pain. 

Excited to finally meet up with Joletta Belton from America, who is doing fantastic work in the US, to promote the pain management message via Endless Possibilities Initiative.

Equally excited to be meeting Ann Gates, well known around the world promoting keeping active via Exercise Works.

If you are a healthcare professional and thinking of running an event, please don’t forget to involve Pain self-managers, not just to tick a box, but to get actually involve them. We have excellent messages to share, to help healthcare professionals.

So...more about the Reforming MSK Practice event and the story so far

In 2017 Jack Chew from The Physio Matters Podcast was interrupted mid monologue by Andrew Walton at a visit to Connect Health HQ. Jack was laying out what he and his team felt were key issues standing in the way of progress in the MSK industry and the interruption was a question that would stall a utopian but delight a pragmatist; 'What would you do then?' Read more here and how to book your place.

I would'nt hang around, as I know this event is going to get booked up VERY FAST.

Love activity, hate exercise?

Love activity, hate exercise?

via Matthew Low @MattLowPT

Love activity, hate exercise?

The “Love activity, Hate exercise?” campaign from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) launches on the 6th July. This campaign encompasses and supersedes several previous campaigns including “older people day” and “workout at work day”.

For more information, you can read more here.