"My experience with the Nottingham City Hospital Back Pain team"

About: City Hospital campus / Pain Management

(as the patient),

I have been suffering from a "bad back" for roughly the past 20 years. I have experienced frequent relapses which have been caused by trauma, over-exertion, putting on a sock and even rolling over in bed! I have visited various G. P. 's and Sports Physio's over the years, and even tried an Osteomyologist. As a last resort, I reluctantly agreed to attend Back Pain clinic run by City Hospital in Nottingham.

The nurses were absolutely brilliant. They treated me as an individual, as opposed to the usual which seemed to be "just another middle aged man with a bad back". Collectively they taught the benefits of taking medication regularly, the actual physical process of pain, and amongst many other things the realisation that there was, actually, light at the end of the tunnel.

Although the sessions were group based, the nurses managed to give everyone an appropriate amount of time and valued the input from each one of us.

For me, the outstanding quality they displayed was the total lack of ego. The treatment was about us, not them. They all had extremely high levels of knowledge and were very proficient facilitators but at no point did they lose sight of the fact that we, as patients, had an equal stake in our own treatment and that by keeping us engaged there was a far greater possibility of involvement, thereby leading to a greater chance of success. Indeed, it was apparent that there were times when the nurses allowed the group to swerve off course from time to time, almost imperceptibly bringing us back to the current subject, to allow one of us to understand an important point or lesson in our own way. This skill is very difficult to teach, and is testament to not only the professionalism of the nurses but also to their humanity and obvious belief in what they were doing. This belief was evident in their delivery style, making them not only convincing, but validating the information they shared with us through their obvious total confidence that we, as sufferers, would benefit.

My course ended in January. I have not suffered any relapses, and still employ many of the methods given to me which have allowed me to live a fuller, more active life. This in turn has improved my fitness, my happiness, my mental health, my relationships and my outlook. I now feel optimism as opposed to pessimism when contemplating my forthcoming "50's".

The effect that Paula Banbury and Jill Kerry have had on my life should not be underestimated. I know it's their job, but I struggle to put into words the impact they have had upon me.

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Response from Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

Thanks so much for taking the time to give us such lovely feedback Tommy. We’re delighted to hear that our back care team have had such a positive influence on you and helped to change your life for the better. We will be sure to share your kind words with Paula, Gill and the team.

Our staff awards are open to nominations for another two weeks. You may wish to consider entering the team for an award so that they can receive the recognition they deserve. The relevant category would be MUSCULOSKELETAL & NEUROSCIENCES and you can nominate the team by visiting http://www.nuh.nhs.uk/nuhonours/ or by calling 0115 9691169 x76028.

Response from City Hospital campus

This lovely feedback was originally posted in August 2014 via Patient Opinion. We responded on 26 August 2014 to thank the patient for taking the time to get in touch to share details of their experience and ensured the feedback was shared with the team concerned.

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