Neuropathic Pain in Children: Multimodal Assessment and Diagnosis

  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    Institute of Child Health
Updated on 27 January 2022
chronic pain
quantitative sensory testing
sensory testing


Some children experience chronic pain that is related to damage or diseases that affect the nerves that send pain signals. This is known as neuropathic pain. This is not well understood and can be difficult to diagnose. It can often produce unusual feelings such as sensitivity of the skin to light touch. Neuropathic pain is often severe and difficult to treat, and can affect quality of life for the child and family. This study aims to better characterise the symptoms and signs, and impact of neuropathic pain in children.


The Investigators will determine whether a questionnaire to identify neuropathic pain in adults is also useful in children. This will help paediatricians and other doctors to recognise neuropathic pain and start appropriate treatment or know when to refer children to a chronic pain clinic.The Investigators will also measure the effects of neuropathic pain on mood, sleep, and quality of life (using questionnaires); identify changes in the sensitivity of the skin to touch and other sensations (using specialised sensory tests); and determine the feasibility of brain imaging for assessing changes in the brain (using magnetic resonance imaging or MRI), in children with neuropathic pain. This information will allow the investigators to measure how effective different types of treatment are, and help ensure children get the most appropriate treatment or interventions to reduce pain and effects on quality of life.

This pilot study of 10-18 year olds diagnosed with neuropathic pain will involve completion of questionnaires by the child and parent, and sensory testing in the child, after their clinic appointment. For some families, there will be an additional visit for MRI. Children will be recruited from the Chronic Pain Outpatients service at Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust. This research is funded by Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity.

Condition Only Child, Peripheral Neuropathy, Peripheral Neuropathy, Neuralgia, Pain, Post-Surgical Pain, Pain (Pediatric), Pain, Post-Surgical Pain, Pain (Pediatric), neuropathic pain
Treatment Quantitative Sensory Testing, Neuroimaging, Patient reported outcome measures
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT03312881
SponsorInstitute of Child Health
Last Modified on27 January 2022

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