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Discipline of Pain Management

Multidisciplinary approach to treating and managing chronic pain
We are world leaders in the area of pain management and are dedicated to the improving quality of life of sufferers and discovering new treatments for persistent and chronic pain.

About the discipline

An estimated 20 percent of Australians suffer persistent pain. This is one of the nation's most costly healthcare problems. 

Established in 1990, our scientists and clinicians are world leaders in the area of pain management and are dedicated to discovering new treatments for persistent pain. 

We are a multidisciplinary group of clinicians, researchers and educators whose activities range from acute pain (e.g. post operative and trauma) to chronic non-cancer pain (for example, lower-back pain, post-amputation pain, herpes) and cancer pain management. We run both research and education programs in the discipline and treat patients.  

The Pain Management Research Institute is a joint initiative between the University of Sydney and the Royal North Shore Hospital. The institute is a division of the Kolling Institute of Medical Research

Hear from the Head of Discipline

Learn more about our research into pain management

Study options

Our pain management courses explore the problem of pain in the community and the role of health professionals in managing and treating a range of pain conditions.

You will learn to prevent acute and sub-acute pain from progressing to chronic and disabling pain, and how to work with other health professionals to achieve this goal.

These courses are suitable for graduates in medicine, dentistry, psychology, nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and other relevant health disciplines. Our pain management courses develop the knowledge and skills of healthcare professionals and thus improve services offered to patients in pain. Many graduates are now working in senior roles in the field. 

The pain management program is offered online and may be completed full time or part time. 

*Requires a medical degree

The University offers a range of research opportunities to help you pursue your passion. You can undertake a:

To learn more about research opportunities in the Faculty of Medicine and Health visit our postgraduate research page.

The Discipline of Pain Management offers a range of professional development and education in pain management. 

Workshop and webinars
Symposia and visiting scholars

For details on upcoming symposia or the 2019 visiting scholars program, please email or call +61 2 9463 1516.

Non-award study

You can also choose to enrol in individual pain management units of study. Non-award units can be credited towards a future degree at the university (within two years of completion) or as part of another degree (with the permission of your faculty and university). Whether you are a student or practicing professional, individual units of study are an extremely useful option for developing skills in a specific area without needing to enrol in a full course of study.

Patient services

The pain management clinic is a purpose designed clinical facility in the Douglas Building at Royal North Shore Hospital and is part of the Michael J Cousins Pain Management and Research Centre

We offer treatment of acute, chronic and cancer pain on referral from either GP or treating specialists.

For more information on assessments, treatment options or to make an appointment, please call: 02 9463 1500.

Programs available:

  • BPSM.

For more information on these programs please visit the PMRI website.

Our research

The Pain Management Research Institute comprises basic and translational researchers, and many members are directly involved in clinical treatment, research and education programs. We run an intensive research program investigating mechanisms and treatment of a wide range of severe persistent pain problems that many people suffer. 

Our research pursues the broad theme that persistent pain is a disease entity with its own symptoms, signs and underlying disorders such as abnormal sensory, spinal cord and brain neuronal physiology, neurochemistry, anatomy, and pathology.

The laboratories include the Cognitive and Behavioural Research Laboratory, Cellular Physiology of Pain Research Laboratory, Pain Management Human Studies Group and the Spinal Cord Injury Pain Clinical Research Laboratory. 

For further details, please see the Kolling Institute site.

Clinical training

We offer specialist training positions for fellowships and training fellowships. For further details, please contact: 

  • Amanda Glavin, Administration Practice Manager
  • Dr Paul Wrigley, Senior Staff Specialist Pain Medicine and Training Supervisor

Head of Discipline

Paul Glare
Professor Paul Glare
View academic profile

Contact us

  • +61 2 9463 1526 (EA to Director)
  • +61 2 9463 1500 (Clinic)
  • +61 2 9463 1516 (Pain Education)
  • Douglas Building, Reserve Road, St Leonards Royal North Shore Hospital

Postgraduate Program Director

Elizabeth Devonshire
Dr Elizabeth Devonshire
View academic profile
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