What is pain?
Pain is a distressing sensory or emotional experience associated with intense or damaging tissue structural damage
Acute pain generally lasts for 1-2 months, resulting from injury and while the tissue is healing.
Chronic pain lasts for more than 3 months, after healing should have occurred.
- Sometimes there is ongoing tissue damage: e.g. arthritis, cancer, nerve damage
- More often there is no detectable tissue damage but there is ongoing activity in the tissue damage-warning nerves in the spinal cord and brain
The chronic pain sufferer can become debilitated due to fear of moving and/or distressed about not being able to function.
The cost of pain
million Australian lived with chronic pain. This is set to rise to 5.23 million by 2050
also live with depression and anxiety
The annual cost of associated lost workdays and healthcare to the economy
Projected prevalence of chronic pain by 2050
Pain Foundation Ltd is the not-for-profit organisation with DGR status that helps provide secure funding to the researchers and clinicians of the Pain Management Research Institute (PMRI).
PMRI is a Research Centre of the Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney and a Centre of the Kolling Institute of Medical Research, a joint initiative between the University and Northern Sydney Local Health District. PMRI has been leading the way in the science and treatment of pain since 1990.
Pain Foundation Ltd and PMRI together pursue our broad goal of becoming a global leader in providing comprehensive pain management solutions, lifting the burden of pain from the community.
We do this by:
- Conducting basic/pre-clinical, clinical and applied research programs
- Operating a national and international education program
- In collaboration with the Michael J Cousins Pain Management & Research Centre (PMRC), treating patients with acute pain, cancer pain, and chronic non-cancer pain.
What we’ve achieved so far
Here are just a few of the key outcomes of PMRI research over the past 3 decades.
- Documented the burden of chronic pain in NSW
- Led to the development new drugs and devices for pain management – including the revolutionary Evoke spinal cord stimulator
- Developed an understanding of how cannabis controls pain
- Demonstrated the effectiveness of pain self management programs
- Shown that early intervention helps injured workers return to work sooner.
Pain Management Research Institute. Dashboard 2020
- 5 research group leaders
- 7 early/mid career researchers & post- docs
- 11 PhD candidates, 3 completed
- Epidemiology, Biostatistics, Health Economics
- 2 Clinical trials staff
- 18 grants awarded
- Total research income: $5.8 million
- 29 peer-reviewed publications in international literature
- Completed clinical trials of new drugs and devices
- 72 Master of Medicine students
- 62 Refresher course participants
- 110 Webinar participants
- Lead of the Discipline of Pain Medicine, Sydney Medical Program
What we need to continue this important work
Our goal is to generate more than $500,000 per annum to maintain current PMRI research initiatives (scholars, research assistants, and lab equipment); and another $1m to take on additional innovative programs to support best practice in pain research and management.
PMRI Executive Team
Staff Anaesthetist & Pain Specialist
University of Sydney, Royal North Shore Hospital
Board of Directors
Brian H. Davidson
A/Prof Charles Brooker
MBChB, MRCP, FANZCA, FFPMANZCA, Head of Department of Pain Management, Royal North Shore Hospital
Chairman of the AHB Shareholders Board (A H Beard Pty Ltd)
Prof. Michael J. Cousins AO
AO MBBS MDDSc FANZCA FRCA
CEO Red Ark
Sydney Metro Retail Advisory Panel
National Foundation for Australian Women
Prof. Paul Glare
MBBS, FRACP, FFPM ANZCA, FAChPM RACP, FACP
Chair of Pain Medicine, University of Sydney Director
Paul M. Hotz
Warren J. McLeland
BSc B Comm. MBA
Dr Sharron Phillipson
BMed, FRACGP, FACAM, DCH, Dip Paed, Dip ABLS, DPD
Nigel A.D. Stewart
FAICD FFin AIF® GDipAppFin Chairman of Stewart Partners
MA (Psych), PGC (Pain Mgt) Cert IV Injury Mgt & Return to Work, NSW Vice President Australian Rehabilitation Providers Assoc
Chief Executive Officer Woodbury Financial Services
Christine McNamee Liddy
Australasian Gastro Intestinal Trials Group University of NSW Foundation Board Council Member and Fellow of St John’s College, (within the University of Sydney)