Managing Pain

Our goal is to make your child as comfortable as possible while in the hospital. For best results, we use a combination of interventions. Your child's nurse, doctor and other care team members can give you more information and suggestions. Please ask your physician or nurse what medications or therapies are being used to manage your child's pain.

Pain Control Delivery

Analgesia is used to help block pain signals. We use several kinds of analgesia. Our goal is to make your child comfortable so that they can continue to do activities while in the hospital. If you have any concerns about your child's pain, please speak to the healthcare team. 

Patient Controlled Analgesia (PCA)

Patient Controlled Analgesia (PCA) is a programmable pump that delivers IV pain medication at the push of a button. The pump is programmed to give a specific amount of medicine for your child's pain without the risk of overdosing. No matter how often your child presses the button, they only receive the amount of medicine that is safe for them. Your child should press the button when they are in pain or about to do an activity that may hurt (like getting out of bed). Have your child press the button 10 minutes before moving. They can press the button again during the activity. 

Epidural Analgesia

Epidural analgesia gives pain medicine continuously through a tube into the back. The epidural catheter is placed while your child is asleep in the operating room. Pain medicine is given through the catheter by a pump that is programmed to deliver it continuously at a specific rate. The pain medicines used in an epidural are local anesthetics and an opioid. This medicine is given close to the nerves blocking pain signals to the brain. An epidural catheter can be left in place for 1-5 days. It lowers the number of side effects compared to other pain treatment options. 

Peripheral Nerve Catheter (PNC)

A Peripheral Nerve Catheter (PNC) gives pain medicine continuously through a tube in the arm or leg. It is placed while your child is asleep in the operating room. Pain medication is given with a programmed pump to deliver the medication continuously to control pain to a specific nerve. The pain medicine used is a local anesthetic that blocks pain signals from reaching the brain. Your child will be able to move but may not have feeling in the area that is receiving the medicine.