Let’s push the pain threshold

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A GROUND-breaking programme to help people manage their pain has been hailed a success by patients and doctors.

The joint project run by Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust (CHFT), NHS Calderdale and NHS Kirklees, was one of only eight nationally chosen to take part in an ambitious three-year programme, funded by the Health Foundation, called Co-creating Health.

Since the programme was launched in 2007, more than 300 people in Calderdale and Kirklees have had their lives transformed – through developing the knowledge, skills and confidence to help manage pain. The programme has now been extended for two more years.

Avril Polak, of Willowfield, Halifax became involved in the programme last year, after years of severe pain in her muscles, tendons and ligaments.

She said: “Before joining the programme, I tried Tai Chi and Pilates but unfortunately these proved too painful for me. I managed to complete gentle exercise classes only with increased medication and therefore felt a little disappointed.

“I’ve now learned how to push my boundaries and still manage my pain. I gained the confidence to drive to Huddersfield on my own for the first time in five years, something I wouldn’t have dreamed of doing prior to joining the programme.”

Dr Dimple Vyas, CHFT’s chronic pain consultant, said: “Patients have reported increased confidence, a better understanding of the source of their pain and medications and a resumption of every day activities.

“We are delighted the project has been extended. This means we will be able to offer training on how to support self-management to more clinicians, and programmes for people living with musculoskeletal pain.”

For more information about the project, contact the Co-creating Health project office on 01484 347036.

l Has the project transformed your life? Tell us about your experiences. Email: Yoursay@halifaxcourier.co.uk